Interagency Security Task Force
NCPC's Interagency Security Task Force, which includes members of the Commission along with security professionals from federal and District agencies, was initially convened in March 2001 to address the unsightly appearance of physical security measures in the nation’s capital, and has been re-convened on several occasions since.
Today the Task Force includes representatives from:
- National Capital Planning Commission
- District of Columbia Office of Planning
- District of Columbia Deputy Mayor for Public Safety
- Department of Homeland Security, ISC
- Department of Interior (National Park Service)
- U.S. Secret Service
- General Services Administration (NCR & Public Building Service)
- Architect of the Capitol
- U.S. Commission of Fine Arts
- Department of Justice
- Department of Commerce
The Task Force has guided key NCPC accomplishments, including:
- In response to the unsightly security features erected after Oklahoma City, NCPC adopted Designing for Security in the Nation’s Capital in November 2001 to guide the design of future security features in Washington;
- Following 9/11, NCPC published the National Capital Urban Design and Security Plan in October 2002 to guide the design of contextually sensitive physical security features in the monumental core of the city;
- To provide improved guidance to submitting agencies, NCPC published an addendum to the National Capital Urban Design and Security Plan in May 2004, and adopted Supplemental Submission Guidelines for Permanent Security in May 2005;
- To provide technical information about the design of crashworthy barriers, NCPC published a booklet on Designing and Testing of Perimeter Security Elements in March 2006;
- To improve urban design and security, NCPC initiated improvements for Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House and helped ensure that the project was completed prior to the 2005 inauguration; and
- To address urban design and security concerns related to freight rail operations in the city, NCPC published the Freight Railroad Realignment Feasibility Study in April 2007.
Securing the Federal Triangle
The General Services Administration, the Interagency Security Committee (ISC), and staff from NCPC have initiated a joint effort to comprehensively evaluate the physical security needs of the federal agencies located in the Federal Triangle.
The first phase of this initiative, which began in September 2010, documented individual facility security needs and identified potential solutions in accordance with standard ISC procedures.
Phase 2 of this initiative will work to merge security measures with urban design improvements, and develop general public space and security recommendations from a precinct perspective.
The ISC, which was formed by Executive Order following the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah federal office building in Oklahoma City, is charged with establishing security standards for all non-military federal facilities.
Improving President's Park South
In mid-2011, NCPC, in partnership with the U.S. Secret Service and the National Park Service, conducted a design competition to generate ideas to beautify the security components and improve the visitor experience at President’s Park South -- the area south of the White House, including the Ellipse.
A proposal by Rogers Marvel Architects was selected as the winner among the five selected finalists. The results of the design competition will inform the development of alternatives for President’s Park South that will be undertaken by the National Park Service and the U.S. Secret Service.
These alternatives will be examined through a federal and local review and approval process, including a NEPA Environmental Assessment, over the course of the next year.
Policies for Reviewing Projects
In 2005, NCPC updated its official policies for reviewing perimeter security projects. The updated polices reinforce the importance of design quality in the nation's capital, and strive to balance building security with the functional and visual qualities of public space.
These policies are based on the efforts of the agency's 2002 National Capital Urban Design and Security Plan.
Lincoln Memorial Rehabilitation (March 2010)
Jefferson Memorial Perimeter Security
National Museum of American History
Urban Design and
Designing and Testing Perimeter Security Elements
Freight Rail Realignment Study
Pennsylvania Avenue at the White House