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Rochester Olmsted Parks & Parkways System

Park & Parkway Systems

Rochester Olmsted Parks & Parkways System
Rochester, New York

For the City of Rochester and Monroe County, Heritage Landscapes worked as prime and consulting preservation expert from 1989 to 2003. Fourteen research, planning and implementation projects with varied workscopes and responsibilities have been completed contributing to a renaissance of Rochester Olmsted Parks system. For Highland Park' s Warner Castle Gardens, designed by Alling Stephen DeForest in the 1920s for Merry Dennis, Heritage Landscapes provided a historic research based recommendations on a modest budget for the rehabilitation of these interesting gardens with the assistance of local DeForest historian and volunteer Jean Czerkas. The Pinetum Drive in Olmsted-designed Highland Park was the subject of a h istoric landscape assessment to address both traffic and circulation issues and evergreen collections. At Olmsted-designed Genesee Valley Park we served as preservation landscape architects to plan the rehabilitation of the Picnic Grove, Moore Drive and the Deer Park. The projects were implemented sequentially with a $2.5 million budget thoroughly renewing this significant riverfront park for the enjoyment of the Rochester community. A group of eleven small neighborhood parks, set aside by developers in the 1802s and 1840s and redesigned by the F.L Olmsted and the Olmsted Brothers, from 1892 to 1909, were damaged by a devastating ice storm. Heritage Landscapes consulted on storm damage grants for park planning and rehabilitation implementation for Washington Square, Jones Park, Susan B. Anthony Square and Lunsford Circle, with Olmsted historian Charles Beveridge and conservator George Wheeler for City of Rochester in 1994. In Seneca Park, Heritage Landscape collaborated to update the park master plan with zoo guidelines, and the resulting rehabilitation of the Trout Pond and Picnic Grove. The scenic entry drive overlooking the Genesee River gorge was reconstructed. The zoo parking lots upgraded in a second project with sustainable drainage infiltration chambers and turfgrass pavers. Anew park maintenance center was sited and incorporated into the meadow and woodland landscape in a third project. For the Olmsted Brothers designed Cobbs Hill Park, we served as the landscape preservation consultants for the incorporation of a radio communication facility at the reservoir. The contributions of Heritage Landscapes to the renewal of Rochester's Olmsted legacy have been both sustained and substantial with local recognition through awards and increased enjoyment of the park and parkways.

Monroe County Parks and Engineering Departments, City of Rochester, Department of Parks, Recreation & Human Services

Projects + Credits:

Heritage Landscapes, Preservation Landscape Architects & Planners for Highland Park, Warner Castle Gardens, Rehabilitation Recommendations, 2003, Pinetum Drive Historic Assessment, with Charles E. Beveridge, PhD, 1991; Genesee Valley Park, Planning and Rehabilitation of the Deer Park 1995, Moore Road, 1993, Picnic Grove 1992, Red Creek Bridge, 1991 for Clark Patterson Mossien, and Environmental Design Research PC; Seneca Park Parking Lot Design & Maintenance Center, 1998, Seneca Park Trout Pond, Lily Pond and Woodland 1996, Seneca Park Parkway Replanting, 1993; Seneca Park Master Plan Update, 1990 lead EDR PC; Seneca Park Drive, 1989, lead LaBella Engineers; Small Parks & Squares Planning & Rehabilitation, 1994 lead Patterson Moissen, Inc. Cobbs Hill Park, Reservoir Radio Communication Facility, for Douglas McCord, ASLA 1993.