At the Intersection of Preservation and Public Use:
Lawrence Halprin’s Skyline Park
EVENT CANCELED. What happens when a historically significant landscape is deemed no longer in keeping with the needs of a city’s population or in sync with current tastes? Do you extend the effort to educate and preserve, find ways to revamp and repurpose, or turn loose an army of jackhammers and deconstruct? The population and decision makers of Denver came to just such a crossroads in regards to Skyline Park, a landmark project designed by iconic landscape architect Lawrence Halprin, during the city’s urban renewal push in the 1970s. After much debate and controversy, and concerted efforts by preservation groups to save the park, it was destroyed and the space redesigned in 2003.
Ann Komara, professor of landscape architecture at the University of Colorado, documents the life and death of this historic park in her new book, Lawrence Halprin’s Skyline Park, published in 2012 by Princeton Architectural Press. This is the first volume in a new series being produced in concert with the Cultural Landscape Foundation, Modern Landscapes: Transition and Transformation, which will focus on historically significant midcentury works that have been demolished or undergone significant transformation.
A longtime resident of San Francisco, Halprin, who passed away in October 2009, created a number of significant projects in the Bay Area that are as much a part of the city’s fabric and history as Skyline Park was for Denver, including United Nations Plaza, Sproul Plaza, Stern Grove Amphitheater, and Ghirardelli Square.
Co-sponsorsThis event is co-sponsored by The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) and the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art – Northern California Chapter (ICAA-NCC).
Date and time
Thursday, March 7, 2013
6 p.m. Check-in, registration, reception, and book signing
7 - 8 p.m. Lecture
104 Montgomery Street
The Presidio, San Francisco
RegistrationMarch 4, 2013 update: this event has been canceled.
If you have any questions, please call Dolores Gerbhardt in the Garden Conservancy's San Francisco office at 415.441.4300.
About the speaker
Ann Komara (right) is associate professor and chair of the Department of Landscape Architecture at the University of Colorado at Denver. Her research and publications focus on cultural landscapes—particularly public parks and landscapes—and their respective creation, history, and reception. Her own work as a landscape architect is typically interdisciplinary, often merging landscape architecture with civil engineering, history, and the humanities. She lives in a mid-century home, reflecting her passion for design from this era. She began her involvement with Skyline Park in 2003 when she led a documentation effort prior to the park’s demolition.