Olmsted and America's Urban Parks

57mins | 2011 | DocumentaryNR
Directors Rebecca Messner, Michael White, George deGolian
With incredible foresight that spanned centuries, Frederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903) brought nourishing green spaces to New York, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Atlanta, Louisville, and dozens of other US cities. Throughout his working life, Olmsted and his firm carried out over 500 commissions, nearly 100 of which were public parks. The parks, he held, were to be vital democratic spaces in cities, where citizens from all walks of life could intermingle and be refreshed. 151 years after Olmsted designed New York City's Central Park with Calvert Vaux, it remains an undisputed haven of tranquility amidst one of the largest, tallest, and most unnatural places on earth. OLMSTED AND AMERICA'S URBAN PARKS, a one hour documentary, examines the formation of America's first great city parks in the late 19th century through the enigmatic eyes of Olmsted, visionary urban planner and landscape architect.

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