The Battle To Remold the Mall





The National Park Service envisions a prime venue for demonstrations: a broad space at the foot of the Capitol with restrooms, seating, a paved surface, even a stand for the media.

Attorneys for activist groups fear a designated, government-approved "pit," limiting freedom of speech and movement in a hallowed place of protest.

The proposal to turn Union Square, the site of the Capitol reflecting pool and the Grant Memorial, into an "urban civic square" is one of many ideas the Park Service is mulling over as it plans the future of the Mall.

But that and other suggested changes have sparked harsh debate between government officials seeking to preserve one of the country's most heavily used national parks and activists concerned about limits on free speech and civil rights.



comments powered by Disqus

Subscribe to our mailing list