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'Town Square' Seen Near White House

December 16, 1995|The Washington Post

WASHINGTON — The closed section of Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House would be transformed into "America's town square" under a plan made public Friday that attempts to create a more active, visually attractive gathering place.

A 13-member panel of nationally known architects and planners, brought together by the National Park Service, suggested a series of new park, educational and commercial uses that, if adopted, would revive a historic but relatively lifeless area of downtown.

Among the panel's ideas: A promenade with statues of the presidents and state flags or other contributions from all 50 states.

Pennsylvania between 15th and 17th streets northwest would remain closed for now, the panel said, although it might be reopened in the future. President Clinton ordered the street closed in May because of security concerns about terrorist car bombings.

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