John F. Kennedy photo

Memorandum on the Year 2000 Plan for the National Capital Region.

November 27, 1962

Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Establishments and the Commissioners of the District of Columbia:

Because of the importance of the Federal interest in the National Capital Region, I want the greatest possible coordination of planning and action among the Federal agencies in developing plans or making decisions which affect the Region.

Decisions of the Federal Government affect directly and indirectly the location of employment centers, highways, parks, airports, dams, rapid transit, utilities, and public and private housing. These decisions all have a crucial bearing on the future development of the metropolitan area outside as well as within the District of Columbia.

In order that the effect of the Federal Government's activities on the Region will be consistent and directed in a manner which will foster the implementation of modern planning concepts, the following development policies are established as guidelines for the agencies of the executive branch, subject to periodic review:

1. Planning for the Region shall be based on the prospect that regional population will approximate 5 million by the year 2000.

2. The corridor cities concept recommended by the Year 2000 Plan, prepared by the National Capital Planning Commission and the National Capital Regional Planning Council in 1961, shall be supported by agencies of the executive branch as the basic development scheme for the National Capital Region.

3. The success of the corridor cities concept depends on the reservation of substantial areas of open countryside from urban development. It shall be the policy of the executive branch to seek to preserve for the benefit of the National Capital Region strategic open spaces, including existing park, woodland, and scenic resources.

4. It shall be the policy of the executive branch to limit the concentration of Federal employees within Metro-Center, as defined in the Year 2000 Plan, over the next four decades to an increase of approximately 75,000.

5. It shall be the policy of the executive branch that new facilities housing Federal agencies outside Metro-Center shall, to the maximum extent possible, be planned, located, and designed to promote the development of the suburban business districts which will be required to serve the new corridor cities.

6. Planning to meet future transportation requirements for the Region shall assume the need for a coordinated system including both efficient highway and mass transit facilities, and making full use of the advantages of each mode of transportation.

7. It shall be the policy of the executive branch to complete and enhance the Mall complex as a unique monumental setting.

8. It shall be the policy of the executive branch to house new public offices of an operational nature in non-monumental buildings which, through the use of the highest quality of design and strategic siting, will have a dignity and strength to establish their public identity. Within Metro-Center, this policy shall be carried out by locating new non-monumental Federal buildings in relatively small but strategically-situated groups in and adjacent to the Central Business District.

9. It shall be the policy of the executive branch to encourage the development of a system of small urban open spaces throughout the District of Columbia as adjuncts to the development of new Government, institutional, commercial and high-density residential facilities. In addition, a system of important streets and avenues shall be designated for special design coordination and treatment.

10. The executive branch will participate with local governments in the formulation of complementary policies essential to the coordinated development of the Region.

I am requesting each department and agency head concerned to give full consideration to these policies in all activities relating to the planning and development of the National Capital Region, and to work closely with the planning bodies which have responsibilities for the sound and orderly development of the entire area.

The Administrator of General Services is requested to cause this memorandum to be published in the Federal Register.


John F. Kennedy, Memorandum on the Year 2000 Plan for the National Capital Region. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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