Lake Park, Milwaukee, WI
Photo by Charles Birnbaum:: 2005:: The Cultural Landscape Foundation



United States

Lake Park

Located along the shores of Lake Michigan, this 140-acre park (originally 124 acres) was among the first five public parks acquired by the city in 1890. In 1892, Frederick Law Olmsted, Sr., was engaged to develop a plan, to be bordered by the lakeshore bluff to the east and a road that would follow the adjacent city streets to the west. His picturesque design included a pastoral carriage road, bridges, and pedestrian paths that connected to diverse park destinations including a refectory, music pavilion, belvedere, lagoons, and meadows. Following Olmsted’s involvement, in the early 1900s, additions were made to the park including a pavilion (1903) and a grand staircase (1907) designed by Alfred C. Clas, an architect and planner who also served on the original Milwaukee County Parks Commission. In recent years development has emphasized recreation as testified by an eighteen-hole pitch-and-putt golf course, tennis courts, and athletic fields. Lake Park was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1993.

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