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Chris Bedford: Public Buildings Should Be Beautiful, Not Brutalist

Federalist Senior Editor Chris Bedford lauded President Trump’s executive order unveiled this week to sculpt classical architecture for federal buildings.


Federalist Senior Editor Chris Bedford lauded President Donald Trump’s executive order unveiled this week that cements classical architecture as the default style for all federal buildings moving forward.

“Unlike a book, where you can choose to pick it up and read it, or unlike a painting, where you can choose to go see it at the museum, this is civic architecture. It’s public space, and it’s in our public square either attacking us everyday or uplifting us everyday,” Bedford said.

Bedford went on to commend President Trump for removing fringe architectural elites from deciding what the public may see in contravention of their own preferences for public works. An October Harris Poll commissioned by the National Civic Art Society found 72 percent of Americans preferred traditional styles for U.S. courthouses and federal office buildings.

“We’ve had tyranny of experts, which sounds pretty familiar if you’re living through the COVID years where no one else has been allowed to have an opinion except for architects until now,” Bedford said. “The people who built a lot of this architecture name it themselves. They called it brutalism… This is steel and it’s cement. It’s not drawn back from the cathedrals of Europe. It’s drawn back possibly to the flak towers of Germany during World War II.”