Lisa Benton-Short on public space, Dr. Thomas King visits the Coalition, and the latest EpicCentering events

Dear Friends of the National Mall Coalition:

It’s been a while since you’ve heard from us but after a slowdown during summer we’re as busy as ever. We have a newly updated Facebook page and have revised and updated our website to highlight current stories. We hope you will take a few moments to learn about the latest news, including events this Friday associated with the opening of the new National Museum of African American History and Culture on September 24th:

Top stories:

George Washington University geography professor Lisa Benton-Short, author of the new book about the National Mall as public space, and World Wildlife Fund Senior Fellow Gordon Binder write about the growing threat to public use of the Mall. READ MORE
Note: This Washington Post article about the new turf grass on the Mall confirms government plans to protect the grass by restrict future public use.


The Washington Post published a letter from Coalition Chair Judy Scott Feldman, sent in response to a fascinating article and digital recreation showing the history of the Mall, in which she reiterates the need for comprehensive planning for the entire Mall instead of uncoordinated, piecemeal development by Smithsonian, National Park Service, and other agencies that threatens the integrity of the Mall as a unified public space and design. READ MORE


In association with the opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, Dr. Carolivia Herron and EpicCentering the National Mallinvites students to the National Mall on September 23rd and October 2nd to participate in “I Remember When the National Mall Was Made” and “The Fall of Phaeton: An African American Response to the painting by Peter Paul Rubens.” READ MORE


In early September, prolific author on historic preservation matters Dr. Thomas King visited the Coalition Board and commiserated with us on failures of the Section 106 public consultation process, as well as NEPA, to meaningfully engage the public when major changes are proposed for our public lands and buildings. Our experience mirrors what he’s learned over 40 years working in government and the private sector. What can we do about it? READ MORE


Earlier this week, Washington Post columnist John Kelly wrote about Albert H. Small, Washington real estate developer, philanthropist, and collector of DC history maps and documents who donated his collection to George Washington University. Mr. Small is on the Board of the National Mall Coalition. READ MORE

Upcoming in the next newsletter: DC’s serious flood threats and what’s being done, and not being done, about them.

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