Market Square

Washington, D.C.

The twin structures of Market Square – its columns marching in a protective semi-circle around the U.S. Navy Memorial – anchor a plaza on Pennsylvania Avenue. Halfway between the U.S. Capitol and the White House, the Memorial itself is composed of a 100-foot-wide disc incised with a world map and graced by a bronze sculpture, “The Lone Sailor,” by Stanley Bleifeld, as well as two maritime-themed, inscribed fountains.

Market Square, adjacent to the Federal Triangle, required a demanding fabrication schedule, including specifications for 26 five-story, fluted, solid limestone columns six feet in diameter with entasis, complete with capitals and bases, all consistent in color and graining – and all delivered finished in a two-week span. Bybee Stone Company designed and installed a custom lathe to meet the schedule for the column project and rented an abandoned stone mill to stage the job and make the tight schedule. The final truckloads for the column sections were shipped in April 1989.

At the time, Will Bybee, then general manager, said, “I’d guess it’s been 40 years or more since a major project contracted for six-foot diameter columns.” He called the project a big challenge and credited the round-the-clock lathe operators for their extreme care and concentration.

Architect: Hartman-Cox Architects
Contractor: Trammell Crow Co.
Cubic Feet: 49,518
Stone: Buff
Completed: 1989