Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument General Management Plan Civic Engagement Newsletter

The National Park Service (NPS) is requesting input on the General Management Plan (GMP) at the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument (national monument) located in Birmingham, Alabama. As a new park unit, the national monument has the need to develop a comprehensive GMP, which is a broad document that identifies long-term goals for the park and guides management of the visitor experience, park facilities, and operations at the park.

In 2017, Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument was created by presidential proclamation to commemorate, preserve, and interpret the struggle for human and civil rights that played out in Birmingham in the 1950s and 1960s. Several prominent historic structures and landscapes that were pivotal to the events of 1963 sit within the national monument boundary and will be vital to the success and continued relevance of the monument, including the 16th Street Baptist Church, St. Paul United Methodist Church, Kelly Ingram Park, the Colored Masonic Temple, and the A.G. Gaston Motel. The NPS also seeks to work in partnership with other important civil rights sites in Birmingham as part of future operations, such as Bethel Baptist Church and other sites associated with the larger civil rights historic district. The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute is also an important cultural and educational research center and NPS partner site within the boundary of the national monument that reaches approximately 150,000 visitors each year through a variety of programs and services.

Of the sites within the monument, only the A.G. Gaston Motel is directly managed by the NPS. The NPS owns one half of the motel complex and manages it in partnership with the City of Birmingham, which owns the other half. Partnering with the City of Birmingham, local churches, universities, and other organizations to commemorate and preserve the history of Birmingham's role in the national struggle for civil rights is essential to the park. Preservation and interpretation of the A.G. Gaston Motel and related sites in Birmingham are dependent on these partnerships. Please help inform management of this outstanding resource by participating in the planning process, attending the virtual public meeting, and submitting your input on this website.
Comment Period: Closed        06/07/2021 - 07/10/2021
Topic Questions Instructions:
When thinking about the future on the monument and the A.G. Gaston Motel, the NPS would like your feedback on the following topics:
Topic Questions:
1. Where would you prefer to start your visit to the national monument and why? Three alternative locations are being considered:
Option 1 - A.G. Gaston Motel;
Option 2 - Birmingham Civil Rights Institute;
Option 3 - proposed annex to the 16th Street Baptist Church.
2. What changes need to occur in the downtown area to improve access to the site and the experience of visitors?
3. How would you like to experience the national monument if you only had one day? What if you had multiple days?
4. What would be your preferred way to experience the resources of the national monument if given an option
between 1) an entirely self-guided tour to all sites, 2) an NPS ranger-led tour that provides interpretation of all sites, or 3) a representative of each site that provides interpretation of the specific story at each location?
5. How would you prefer to access more distant locations in the city related to the civil rights story? Would you like to be able to park your car at each site or park once and take a shuttle/trolley?
6. Given space limitations, what types of interpretive and educational experiences would you prefer were provided at the restored A.G. Gaston Motel?
Document Content:
20210616 NPS BICR Newsletter.pdf20210616 NPS BICR Newsletter.pdf   (2.8 MB, PDF file)
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