Fairmount Park Was Just Named One of 15 Great Places in America

The American Planning Association called the park "unique in the story of American planning."

Fairmount Park Conservancy Hike | Photo via Facebook

Fairmount Park Conservancy Hike | Photo via Facebook

Now might be a good time to visit that Fairmount Park bucket list, before the crowds swarm: The American Planning Association just named the park one of 15 Great Places in America.

Fairmount Park was one of five locations in the country to win in the “2016 Great Public Spaces” category awarded by the organization, which annually recognizes “outstanding people, planning work, and places — representing the best in planning and community impact,” according to its website. Other categories include “2016 Great Neighborhoods” and “2016 Great Streets.”

The organization called the park “unique in the story of American planning” and highlighted some of its defining features, including the south garden of the Water Works – one of the earliest formalized public gardens – the Schuylkill River trail and the park’s tree canopy.

“Today, Fairmount Park spans 2,054 acres and contains a number of historic properties, built structures, and works of public art,” a description from the organization reads. “Still standing are the houses whose estates along the Schuylkill initially formed the park. Many of the homes are open to the public, offering historical interpretations into lives of prominent Philadelphians of the past and renowned collections of period furnishings and art.”

The organization provides a thorough history of the park on its website.

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