2013

Tony Knowles Coastal Trail

Anchorage, Alaska

From stunning views of Anchorage's skyline to the breathtaking expanse of Cook Inlet, with occasional glimpses of Beluga whales, bald eagles, moose, snowcapped Denali, and some of the world's largest tides, there's always something to see and experience along the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Grand Park

Los Angeles, California

Today an aspirational vision of a civic and cultural center for downtown Los Angeles, proposed more than a century ago by the pioneering planning theorist and landscape architect Charles Mulford Robinson, has been realized through the redevelopment of Civic Center Mall as Grand Park. Extending from the Music Center to City Hall, Grand Park not only is one of Los Angeles's most popular places for daily exercises, lunch breaks, and family activities, it also is a hub for surrounding communities of historic Chinatown, Little Tokyo, El Pueblo, and the Old Bank district.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Broadwalk

Hollywood, Florida

Hollywood founder Joseph Young's idea in 1920 for a new resort community was simple: plan and build what would be the Atlantic City of south Florida. Drawing on the "City Beautiful Movement" for inspiration, he bought his first parcel of land in 1921. By 1923, he had completed what would become the town's signature promenade, the 30-foot-wide by one-and-a-half-mile-long pink cement walkway named Broadwalk.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Norman B. Leventhal Park

Boston, Massachusetts

There's no shortage of public spaces in Boston, but the city's first park to be privately financed is the Norman B. Leventhal Park located above an underground parking garage in the serpentine financial district. Where there once was a four-level, above-ground parking structure, there is today a popular and well-maintained space open year-round.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Mount Auburn Cemetery

Cambridge and Watertown, Massachusetts

Mount Auburn, the first "rural" landscaped cemetery in the U.S., not only changed how America thought about death, burial practices, and commemorating the dead, it also launched the 19th century rural cemetery and public park movements.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Forest Park

St. Louis, Missouri

Dedicated in 1876, Forest Park's 1,371 acres — which make it roughly 500 acres larger than New York City's Central Park — are home to 30,000 trees and five of the region's major institutions: the Missouri History Museum, the Muny (the nation's largest amphitheater dedicated to musical theater), the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Saint Louis Science Center, and the Saint Louis Zoo.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Essex County Branch Brook Park

Newark, New Jersey

The nationally historic, beautifully landscaped, and highly popular Essex County Branch Brook Park is the crown jewel of the Essex County, New Jersey, Park System. As such, it plays many roles: as a public backyard for the residents of Essex County, as the playing fields for the city's 40,000 students, and as the destination for 100,000 visitors each spring who come to see the nation's largest collection of blossoming cherry trees.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Grand Central Terminal

New York, New York

When New York's Grand Central Terminal opened on February 2, 1913, The New York Times reported that it was "not only the greatest station in the United States, but the greatest station, of any type, in the world." Planning, design, and construction involved 10 years and $1 billion in today's dollars, but the effort resulted in not only a building with 30 platforms and 44 tracks, but also innovations that influenced decades of American planning, architecture, engineering, and culture.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Walnut Street Bridge

Chattanooga, Tennessee

Chattanooga's "pedestrian jewel" is not a trail, park, or plaza but the city's historic Walnut Street Bridge, the oldest and largest surviving truss bridge in the South and the first non-military highway bridge to span the Tennessee River.

Characteristics, Features, and Map

Esther Short Park

Vancouver, Washington

A $6 million investment to revitalize Esther Short Park in downtown Vancouver, Washington State's oldest public square, has resulted not only in a rose garden and a brick-paved square complete with bell, but also the jump-starting of a 20-year, $800 million plan to redevelop downtown. The park and surrounding area revitalization have been successful, attracting some $250 million in adjacent capital investments since 2002. New residents are moving downtown, and civic leaders from towns and cities in the region are taking notice.

Characteristics, Features, and Map