The mall…also known as M Street…runs from the Capitol building to Tower Bridge.
The street currently has some tall office buildings, a few restaurants and a grassy median strip…but no retail and virtually no foot traffic.
Bill Crouch is the city's Urban Design Manager. On Capital Public Radio's Insight, he said ultimately, the city wants to liven up the mall and fill it with something it doesn't have now:
"People…people having fun; people expressing themselves, enjoying life; music; sound. You know, M Street had that. It was a great space. We had jazz bars we had just a lot of life on the street."
City officials have said they'd like to see the design include iconic structures like plazas or amphitheaters.
The winner of the international design competition will receive $20,000.