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National Mall Nonprofit Selects Finalists In Redesign Competition

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Credit: OLIN + Weiss/Manfredi for Constitution Gardens

Credit: OLIN + Weiss/Manfredi for Constitution Gardens

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WASHINGTON (CBSDC) - For months architects have been vying for the opportunity to redesign the National Mall, including areas near the Capital, Washington Monument and Constitution Gardens.

The Trust for the National Mall is making plans to revamp the most popular national park in the country. With more than 25 million visitors each year to the 700-acre park and 3,000 annual permitted events, the National Mall was not built to withstand the level of foot traffic that it does and has not received the proper attention in restoration and maintenance until now.

The National Mall Design Competition consists of three stages by which a jury of professionals will select one design team for each of the three redesign sites, which are: Union Square, the Washington Monument grounds at Sylvan Theatre and Constitution Gardens.

The selection process includes sifting through portfolios to find up to eight potential lead designers for each of the three sites, and selecting one design team for each site.

The committee controlling the process is looking to build something convenient, high-quality, energy-efficient and sustainable, with the mission of making the National Mall the best park in the world. Donald Stastny, an architect hired to oversee the competition told the Associated press, “The face of the mall is going to change quite dramatically. If you’re in Constitution Gardens, it’s going to be cool, as opposed to ‘How did I end up in this place?”

Not only is the group considering better implementation of entertainment on the mall, but it would also like to increase the quality and overall presence of food and drink.

With the assistance of former first lady Laura Bush, the nonprofit group began fundraising last year to support the project, and now has a goal to raise $350 million from donors and corporations to restore the National Mall.

To view all the digital renderings of proposals being considered or to donate money, visit the website here.

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