Lake Park Ravine
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Lake Park
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
United States

The creation of Lake Park began in 1891 and is one of Frederick Law Olmsted’s last projects before his retirement in 1895.  

About Lake Park

Located along the shores of Lake Michigan, the 138-acre Lake Park features rustic bridges, winding paths, waterfalls, lake bluffs and natural ravines. Olmsted designed the park around the North Point Lighthouse, a steel-and-iron edifice that helped guide ships on Lake Michigan. The lighthouse has since been refurbished and opened as a museum.

Lake Park is one of three Olmsted-designed parks in the city of Milwaukee, joining Riverside Park and Washington Park. Of the three parks, Lake Park most closely retains its original form and intent.

In 1993, Lake Park was placed on the National Register of Historic Places for its connection to Olmsted and its culturally significant Indian mounds. This recognition, along with the park’s centennial celebration, spurred the creation of Lake Park Friends, which continues to promote the preservation, enjoyment and enhancement of Lake Park in the spirit of Olmsted.

Today, recognized park features— such as the pavilion (1903), Ravine Road Footbridge (1905) and grand staircase (1907)— have been added to Olmsted’s original design.


    Lake Park by Eddee Daniel

    Lake Michigan by Virginia Small

    Grand Staircase by Virginia Small


Jackson Park

Built in 1871, the Jackson Park landscape today—including lagoons, historic bridges, winding paths and the Wooded Island—still reflects Olmsted’s early vision. 

Louisville Park System

Louisville’s is one of the four completed park systems that Olmsted designed during his career. The others are Buffalo, Boston and Rochester.