The Vision

After many sketches and visualizations of what the Peace Garden could be, and many long conversations with members of the Peace Garden Project Committee and the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, Royston and his team developed an axial concept that complemented the McMillan plan for the National Mall. A stepped water feature, aligned with the Washington Monument, would run the length of the Point, reflecting the sky above and referencing the rivers surrounding the site. It would then terminate in a circle of bell towers at the Point's tip (later this circle of bells would be exchanged for a jet fountain). Surrounding the water feature would be "informal glades and meadows"1 for more solitary experiences. One commission member, Joan Abrahamson, stated, after seeing Royston's first informal presentation to the Commission, "I feel relieved.  It feels like a really natural solution, as opposed to something imposed on the landscape."2  The plan was approved by the Commission in July of 1993.


1) Report, The Commission of Fine Arts, 22 April 1993, p. 20.

2) Ibid.