Dear Ms. Gallagher:
In the meeting of 27 July, the Commission of Fine Arts adopted the enclosed design guidelines for the proposed construction of a visitor center for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial at Constitution Avenue, 23rd Street, and Henry Bacon Drive, N.W. Pursuant to Public Law 108-126, which refers to design guidelines that are established by both agencies during the review process, these guidelines were developed in coordination with your staff with the intention of having your Commission adopt the same guidelines at the forthcoming meeting of 3 August 2006. The design guidelines also supplement the Commission of Fine Arts' conditional approval of the site in September 2005.
During their discussion of the design guidelines, the Commission members emphasized the need to limit the project's great risk for negative impact on the existing landscape of the site and they noted the requirement to minimize the project's size in accordance with the authorizing legislation. They reiterated their particular concern, which was confirmed during their visit to the site on the morning of the meeting, that the proposed visitor center should not detract from the design and setting of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Furthermore, they emphasized the importance of protecting the views to and from the Lincoln Memorial from any visual intrusion.
The Commission looks forward to coordinating further with you on reviewing the National Park Service's future concept submission for the design of the visitor center.
/s/Thomas Luebke, AIA
Patti Gallagher, Executive Director
National Capital Planning Commission
401 9th Street, N.W., Suite 500-N
Washington, DC 20004
Enclosure: Design guidelines
cc: Joe Lawler, NPS
John Parsons, NPS