“Open spaces, not empty spaces- just because there is a spot does not mean we have to fill it with something new,” said Jenniffer Ott.

On July 20, 2021, hundreds of viewers tuned into Conversations with Olmsted: Creating Parks for the Ages. Hosted by the National Association for Olmsted Parks on behalf of Olmsted 200, the second installment in the series explored Olmsted’s belief that thoughtfully-designed public parks could bring communities together and provide residents and visitors with a host of health, economic and environmental benefits.

The program was moderated by Karen Phillips, FASLA and 2021 LAF Medal Honoree, and featured three innovative leaders of historic Olmsted parks. During the hour-long discussion, the leaders examined the importance of public parks in addressing today’s ecological, social, and cultural changes as well as the need to sustain them for future generations.

Featured speakers:
Susan Donoghue from Prospect Park in Brooklyn, NY
Layla George from Olmsted Parks Conservancy in Louisville, KY
Jennifer Ott from Volunteer Park Trust in Seattle, WA

This program was one of the many planned to celebrate Frederick Law Olmsted. The Olmsted 200 campaign runs for the entire year, leading up to the 200th anniversary of Olmsted’s birth on April 26, 2022, and offering in-person and online events aimed at building public and policy support for America’s natural and historic spaces.

A recording of the panel discussion can be found here.