Jul 24, 2011
Stairway To Shame
In the mid 1930's, Allentown, and especially it's park system, was endowed with magnificent stone edifices, courtesy of the WPA; Works Progress Administration. This was a New Deal program designed to provide employment during the aftermath of the depression. Stone masons from all over the country converged on this city and built structures which are irreplaceable. The walls and step structures in Lehigh Parkway, as the Union Terrace amphitheater, are legacies which must be protected. Pictured above is the grand stairway from Lawrence Street (Martin Luther King Drive) up to Union Street, built in 1936. The steps are in a state of disrepair. They lead to the great Union Street Retaining Wall, fifty feet high and two blocks long, which was completed in 1937. I call upon the Trexler Trust and Allentownians of memory, to insist these steps are re-pointed and preserved. The current Administration knows nothing of our past, and really has no commitment to our future. Save the things in Allentown that matter.
UPDATE: This Post first appeared September 18th, 2008. Although $Millions of dollars have been spent on the Park System since then, and new attractions have been built, the WPA monumental stone structures go unattended.