Parks & Greenways - Rhodes Workshop to put issues in Perspective

Our current, local debates over green spaces in Memphis and Shelby County are part of a bigger 2-century long debate over environmental protection and urban planning. Rhodes College workshop to take a look at the past and put the issues in historical context. Free. Apr. 7. You're invited.

For information, click "read more."

Date & Time: Apr. 7, (Tues.) 4:00 - 7:30 pm.
Location: Ballroom, Bryan Campus Life Center, Rhodes College

An overview, or, if you're up for a little homework, click the links:

Overton Park and the Memphis Parkway system, were planned and designed by George Kessler, and influenced by Frederick Law Olmsted’s designs for New York's

Central Park

and Prospect Park.

To Olmsted, the founder of American landscape architecture, parks were not just objects of beauty. He was passionately convinced that such green spaces contributed both to the social cohesiveness and fairness of a modern urban society and to the health of urban populations.

Olmsted's ideas about urban parks were based on what he had seen in Britain and Europe, and particularly on Birkenhead Park, the first public park in the world.
Birkenhead, designed by the great engineer Joseph Paxton , opened in 1847 and was considered by Olmsted to democratize the urban experience and produce significant health benefits for one of the 19th century’s great industrial cities.

Paxton was an innovator, but he too inherited from the past and drew from urban planning and sanitation reforms in the 18th century. The creation and maintenance of green spaces was an urgent concern from the very moment at which rapid urbanization and industrialization emerged in the western world.

As Memphis and Shelby County focus on our parks and greenways, it's interesting to note that in 1883, Olmstead moved from New York to Brookline, Massachusetts where he worked on a park system for the City of Boston eventually spending much of his time on the city's Emerald Necklace.

Click here for a full description of the workshop.

Click Prospect Park website and look around at the photos. Surprising how much it looks like parks in downtown and mid-town Memphis.

For an update and to learn more about the dramatic and immediate issues confronting Overton Park, click here.