Page:Olmsted report on Portland, Oregon parks, 1903.djvu/5

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17
REPORT OF THE PARK BOARD

opportunities for those using them to enjoy some of the scenery; it requires that most of the area be devoted to that beautiful but comparatively tame type of scenery which is composed mainly of flat or gently sloping or undulating surfaces covered with smooth, close turf surrounded with an abundance of shade trees. The beauty of this type of scenery is ruined by the introduction of numerous incongruous and artificial features. Straight lines of drive or walk or water surface, rows of trees, buildings, monuments, fountain jets, flagpoles, and particularly formal flower beds are usually injurious to and often destructive of the simple rural beauty which is appropriate to this class of parks.

Scenic reservations are of all sizes, and include all sorts of natural or semi-natural scenery which is, however, if owned by municipalities, apt to be comparatively moderate in scale. They usually differ from parks proper in being rougher, wilder and less artificially improved and are usually more remote and hence less resorted to by such throngs of visitors as require broad drives and walks and other artificial conveniences in the parks proper. Municipal reservations are sometimes selected to preserve one or more notable landscape features of moderate size, such as, for instance, the gorge of the Genesee River north of Rochester; the Blue Hills southeast of Boston; the great trap hills of Meriden and Mount Royal of Montreal.

Boulevards and parkways are important parts of a complete park system. For convenience, formal city pleasure drives may better be called "boulevards," while informal pleasure drives may be more specifically designated "parkways," although no such distinction has heretofore been made. Eastern Parkway and Ocean Parkway, in Brooklyn, are instances of liberal and complete boulevards, in which there is a broad central drive devoted exclusively to pleasure driving and a narrower drive on each side intended for access to adjoining private properties as well as for ordinary street traffic and separated from the middle drive by double rows of trees with promenades between them. Drexel Boulevard, in Chicago, is another type of boulevard (more popular with real estate men) in which there are two sidewalks each with a row of trees, two broad driveways and a broad central ornamental strip. The parkway called in part Fenway, in part Riverway and in part Jamaicaway, in Boston, and Bay Ridge Parkway or Shore Drive, in Brooklyn, are examples of informal parkways in which adjoining or included local scenery or distant views are more important than the decorative turf strips and shade trees.

4—The Parks of a City Should Be Parts of a System.

If a city is to have parks, a careful study of the problem will con-