M.Arch II Studio


Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University - Washington Alexandria Architecture Center

July - August 2014 - Alexandria, VA




The Mall in Washington, DC needs a Gateway on the Potomac river.

This threshold between the water and the land will welcome water taxis, duck tours and private boat owners.

The historical plan of Washington, DC, the lines between its monuments dictate the location and orientation, pointing toward the Washington Memorial. A paved plaza slows down the traffic and creates a welcoming and iconic parvis before the Sacred Space of the Mall. The Welcoming Center, the docks and the cafe float above the water and offer an slightly ajar gateway to the Mall.


Below are graphics from the studio.

Water Gateway, Threshold, Opening in the Wall...

Site Plan


Floor Plans - The gateway is slightly ajar. You are welcome to the Mall, but remember, it's a Sacred Space...


Section - The tension of the structure focuses the eye towards the Washington Memorial...


Details - The outer structure holds the roof, while columns hold the floors. A water drain on the plaza brings rain water back to the river while materializing the direction to the Washington Memorial. Leisure on the steps of the marina, talk to the yachtsman...