National Mall to get overhaul in design competition

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WASHINGTON (AP) - A nonprofit group that raises money to improve the National Mall is announcing a jury of architects, preservationists and other experts who will judge the first phase of a design competition to overhaul three sites on "America's front yard."

Union Square, the Washington Monument grounds and Constitution Gardens are all set to get overhauls in the design competition.

The competition focuses on redesigning Union Square at the foot of the Capitol, the Washington Monument grounds and Constitution Gardens near the Lincoln Memorial.

The Trust for the National Mall announced Wednesday that the jury includes Los Angeles architecht Thom Mayne, former Howard University architecture dean Harry Robinson and former Washington Post architecture critic Benjamin Forgey, among others. The group meets for three days to select designers who will advance.

Since Sept. 8, more than 1,200 designers and teams from 30 states and 10 countries have entered the National Mall competition.

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