Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Letter to the Administrator, National Capital Transportation Agency.

February 23, 1966

[Released February 23, 1966. Dated February 22, 1966]

Dear Mr. McCarter:

The Congress, in enacting the National Capital Transportation Act of 1965, authorized construction of a rail rapid transit system that eventually will be expanded to serve the entire National Capital Region. Transportation is a critical problem for all major urban centers, and what is done here will have significance far beyond this region.

While we seek to resolve problems of moving people and goods within the congested National Capital area, our concerns must not be confined to the utilitarian requirements of transportation alone. We must take this opportunity to make our Capital a more attractive and inspiring place in which to live and work. The Congress has already enacted legislation to assure that beautification is a major consideration in the development of our highway system. The same concern must guide development of plans for mass transit.

In designing the system for the Nation's Capital, I want you to search worldwide for concepts and ideas that can be used to make this system attractive as well as useful. It should be designed so as to set an example for the Nation, and to take its place among the most attractive in the world. In selecting the architects for this system, you must seek those who can best combine utility with good urban design. As you search for the new and innovative, you must also take advantage of the experience of other cities.

I know that your efforts to accomplish these objectives will be of great interest to this community and to other cities faced with the task of coordinating mass transportation facilities with other urban needs. I ask that you report to me periodically on your accomplishments so that we can join in encouraging public discussion of your plans and in taking steps that others may benefit from your experience.

Sincerely,

LYNDON B. JOHNSON

[Hon. Walter J. McCarter, Administrator, National Capital Transportation Agency, Washington, D.C. 20432]

Note: For the President's remarks on signing the National Capital Transportation Act of 1965, see 1965 volume, this series, Book II, Item 499.

Lyndon B. Johnson, Letter to the Administrator, National Capital Transportation Agency. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/238147

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