Lawyers' Mall Reconstruction

Historic, Public, Historic, Sustainable

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Lawyers’ Mall, a civic plaza at the foot of the State House, serves as the gateway to historic downtown Annapolis and is the connective hub for the State of Maryland’s Legislative Campus. As the default host location for a wide range of civic events from political protests to inauguration ceremonies, the project team was tasked with designing an inviting, robust and historically sensitive public plaza for reconstruction after a major underground utilities project.

The re-envisioned plaza enhances security and accessibility, responds to significant historic context, and provides an improved home for the Thurgood Marshall memorial previously installed at the location in 1996.  

The design incorporates a simple and limited material palette derived from the State House and other immediate site context (brick masonry pavers, granite steps, iron fencing) and the original 1996 memorial design (granite pavers, benches, bronze) to unify site elements and create a sense of place. Regional flora showcase the State’s four prominent seasons in planters defining the plaza while passively filtering stormwater draining into the nearby Chesapeake Bay in a large rain garden facility, the first of its kind within the Legislative Campus. Site security, maintenance, and accessibility is improved through clear delineation of circulation and assembly space, active and passive crowd control measures, improved site lighting, integration of a snow melt system, and AV & electrical needs for large gatherings and events.


Design Team: Steve Ziger; Ann Powell; Christopher Brown; Alec DuMond

Owner: Maryland Department of General Services

Location: Annapolis, Maryland

Completion: 02/2021

Area: 17,500 SF; .51 acres