Design concepts by the five finalist teams in the competition to redesign the area around the Gateway Arch (formally, "Framing a Modern Masterpiece: The City + The Arch + The River 2015") will be unveiled tomorrow morning and displayed in the Arch's lobby for a month.
I plan to be there.
The finalist designs are the results of months of public discussion and expert evaluation called for the National Park Service and driven by the CityArchRiver2015 Foundation.
The Foundation suggested 10 goals to the competitors:
- Create an iconic place for the international icon, the Gateway Arch.
- Catalyze increased vitality in the St. Louis region.
- Honor the character-defining elements of the National Historic Landmark.
- Weave connections and transitions from the city and the Arch grounds to the Mississippi River.
- Embrace the Mississippi River and the east bank in Illinois as an integral part of the national park.
- Mitigate the impact of transportation systems.
- Reinvigorate the mission to tell the story of St. Louis as the gateway to national expansion.
- Create attractors to promote extended visitation to the Arch, the city and the river.
- Develop a sustainable future for the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial.
- Enhance the visitor experience and create a welcoming and accessible environment.
Many of you have participated in the process so far; some of you are on the finalist teams. A variety of interesting ideas have been mailed/tweeted/emailed/shouted/T-shirted/editorialized to the teams.
Because of my role on the Foundation, I have had to keep my personal opinions to myself. But, I have them, and I very much look forward to seeing with an open mind what solutions the best designers in the world will propose.
So far, this is exactly what I had hoped would happen when I invited several civic leaders to work with me on this project. Tomorrow is going to be a very interesting day.