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Painted Desert Community Complex
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Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona, USA

Painted Desert Community Complex

…WMF’s Modern Century Program is another opportunity to garner attention for Route 66 and the significant landmarks along the highway.

Holly MacCammon

In the mid-1950s, the Eisenhower administration funded a ten-year program—which came to be known as Mission 66—to upgrade the National Parks system, in response to the huge visitor boom after World War II. Built in 1963 and designed by Richard Neutra and Robert Alexander, the Painted Desert Community Complex was one of the agency's most ambitious projects. With the demolition of the Gettysburg Cyclorama in 2013, the Painted Desert Community Complex is Neutra’s last remaining project for the National Park Service and a rare example of his public work. In late 2016 the site was designated as a National Historic Landmark, but many other fine designs built as part of Mission 66 remain unprotected.

Submitted by Holly MacCammon

Photo Credit: 
© Beinlich, National Park Service