Museum Spotlight: The Army Concourse

The National Museum of the United States Army’s visitor experience will begin as soon as visitors approach the National Army Museum and examine the personalized bricks lining the walkway. Larger-than-life pylons that relate Soldier stories of service and sacrifice will then escort visitors to the main entrance. Once inside the Museum, the Army Concourse will set the stage for visitors, orienting them to the U.S. Army and hosting the entryway to the Fighting for the Nation Galleries.

As the gateway to all six sub galleries, the Army Concourse serves not only as a gathering place, but also as an introduction to the institution that the Army has been throughout American history. When visitors arrive in the Army Concourse they will experience a dramatic, and inviting space that spans the length of the six Fighting for the Nation Galleries: Founding the Nation; Preserving the Nation; Nation Overseas; Global War; Cold War; and Uncertain Battlefield. A wayfinding map will orient visitors and provide a synopsis of the galleries in this area.

The gallery entrances will artistically display the campaign streamers from that time period and provide a preview of what visitors will find in that gallery. The six separate entrances also will be structured to invite visitors to explore each one independently, whether one gallery at a time over several visits to the Museum, or in chronological sequence during one visit.

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Conceptual renderings courtesy of Eisterhold Associates Inc.

A kinetic timeline will span the length of the entrances to the Fighting for the Nation Galleries, also presenting the six eras found within the galleries. Sponsored by Northrop Grumman, the timeline will bring Army history to life within the context of American and world history. The timeline will move slowly and periodically zoom in and highlight a specific topic or event before zooming back out and resuming the progressive timeline.

Visitors not well-versed in Army terminology can stop at the “Army 101” interactive touch-screen stations located in the concourse to familiarize themselves with Army jargon, Army ranks, Army structure, and the history of campaign streamers.

The “Army Interactive Table,” sponsored by Lockheed Martin, is also located within the Army Concourse. Here, visitors will be able to choose among a variety of topics, and via an interactive touch screen, take an in-depth look at the Army and the Soldier experience across time.

Another interesting Army Concourse feature will be the “Allies Recognition Map” located near the Army Theater. The Map will provide an overview of U.S. Army-ally relationships throughout our nation’s history. Also, visitors will be able to take a closer look into those relationships by exploring the history of a specific country, conflict, or coalition.

Overall the Army Concourse serves as an introductory course into the storied history of the Army as well as serving as a jumping off point for delving into the many galleries the National Army Museum will feature.

Editor’s Note: The available sponsorship opportunities include sponsorship of the entire Army Concourse for $10 million and named benches throughout the concourse for $25,000 each.

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