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The National Mall Rescripted
If we are to believe that the National Park Service will take public comments seriously enough that glaringly brilliant suggestions to improve The National Mall will likely be implemented wholly or in parts, then here's your chance to affect how American history is presented and experienced.

Give feedback on these questions at the Public Comment Page here by 11:59PM on December 29.

Some of the questions may sound pedestrian at first. For instance:

What should visitor facilities and sidewalk furnishings look like, or what character should they have?

What programs, activities, educational, and recreational opportunities do you want on the National Mall?

What should Pennsylvania Avenue National Historic Park look like, or what streetscape character should it have?

But considering how the entire landscape is a minefield of signification and is the most contested territory in the entire Western Hemisphere, then seemingly mundane questions as whether or not there should be a dedicated jogging path or what text should be placed in a historical marker take on dizzyingly monumental consequence.

The National Mall

A view can be worth a thousand truths and a thousand lies.

Some fugitive thoughts: 1) Should all the bollards, concrete planters, and English ha-has littering the Mall, while not as aesthetically pleasing but nevertheless fantastically interesting (if not more so) as the annual cherry blossoms -- should they and all the other topographical imprints of the Global War on Terror be preserved if and when this war ever ends as a de facto national memorial? 2) What's the deal with all the tunnel-digging? and 3) Pruned has never been to Washington, D.C., so interested shadowy supranational corporate funders, contact us.
  • Rick Anderson
  • December 15, 2006 at 9:54:00 PM CST
  • I for one am not thrilled by what I call "design by consensus".

    I would think that this 'call' for suggestions/remarks is just a way of playing nice with the American public because after all it is "our' mall.

    At any rate by the time it goes through boards, committees, panels, etc it will be a collection of memorials with no real sense of unity or flow and even though all the memorials get built no one will be happy.

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