Freedom Plaza is a popular site for local events and political protests in Washington, DC. It is located along Pennsylvania Avenue, adjacent to Pershing Park and just a few blocks from the White House. The western end of the plaza contains a large fountain, while the eastern end contains an equestrian statue of Kazimierz Pułaski, a Polish soldier who saved the life of George Washington and became a general in the Continental Army. There’s also a giant stone map of the District of Columbia, as designed by Pierre L'Enfant. The design for Freedom Plaza was the result of a competition hosted by the Pennsylvania Avenue Development Corporation. Architect Robert Venturi of Venturi, Rausch and Scott Brown and landscape architect George Patton designed the space which was completed in 1980. It was originally named Western Plaza and renamed in 1988 in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech.
Location and Events
Pennsylvania Avenue NW between 13th and 14th Streets
Washington, DC 20004
The closest Metro stations are Federal Triangle and Metro Center
The design for Freedom Plaza was partially completed because of concerns expressed by the chairman of the Fine Arts Commission, J. Carter Brown. The original plan was to include large models of the White House and Capitol buildings and several additional sculptures.
About Architect Robert Venturi
The Philadelphia based architect has won numerous awards, including the Presidential Design Award for Franklin Court, and has published extensively on modern architecture and planning. His firm completed a variety of projects including Dumbarton Oaks (renovation), Dumbarton Oaks Library, Dartmouth College Library, Harvard University Memorial Hall, Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego, Philadelphia Zoo Tree House and much more.
About Landscape Architect George Patton
The North Carolina based landscape architect has designed the Locust Walk at the University of Pennsylvania, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Kimbell Museum of Art, in Fort Worth, Texas. He published articles on architecture and planning, taught architecture at the University of Pennsylvania, and was one of the six founders of the Landscape Architecture Foundation.