Art & Culture, Buildings

National Medal of Honor Museum

© Rafael Vinoly Architects

This national museum near Dallas is dedicated to the legacy of the more than 3,500 recipients of the Medal of Honor (the United States’ highest recognition for valor in combat). The design consists of an elevated platform supported by five tapering precast concrete columns. The shape of the competition-winning museum design is intended to symbolically honor the award and, through the five columns, also honors the five branches of the Armed Services. Inside the 37-ft-tall floating slab is 40,000 sf of column-free exhibition galleries, supported by a cantilevered steel-framed structure. The exhibition space is accessible by two hanging spiraling staircases and a glass-enclosed passenger elevator. At the center of the exhibition hall is a 25 ft diameter oculus that allows light to enter the courtyard below. An additional state-of-the-art education center, conference center, and event spaces will be housed in the museum’s lower levels, below an accessible green roof, overlooking Mark Holtz Lake.

Arlington, Texas
Rafael Viñoly Architects
National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation
Project Responsibility
Michael Stein


Technical Data

Museum area
9755 m² (105,000 sf)
Floating Gallery
37 ft
Exhibition Area
3716m² (40,000 sf)
Length x Width
61m x 61m (200 ft x 200 ft)




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