Jun 7, 2018

The Island Of Lehigh Parkway

The scene above shows the island in the Little Lehigh, with the boatlanding in the background. Please note the bridge leading to the island. The island, bridge and landing were created by the WPA. Although the island still remains, as does it's stone piers, the bridge is long gone. The boatlanding, although buried, was partially recovered last year by myself and a number of volunteers. The island, as remaining, has lost it's shape and has been enlarged from deposits carried by the Little Lehigh. The island was created by the WPA in the mid 1930's, by excavating a channel on it's south side. It is the intention of the park department to eventually allow mother nature to fill in the channel. Park philosophy has changed from manicured to al natural. It is my hope that the excavated portion of the boatlanding will be retained. In regard to yesterday's post on Irving Park, I have confirmed that one of the WPA stone stairwells was indeed removed this year by the city. I hope that is not their version of a fix. It clearly indicates the need for the WPA Support Group. Click photo to enlarge.

reprinted from April of 2011

UPDATE JUNE 7, 2018: Aa a boy I played on the island and especially remember the concrete benches inlaid with tile. It was indeed a special place.  Although the island will never be restored, it is my mission that the remaining WPA structures be maintained.  In years past I have conducted tours of the WPA Structures, and will do so again if the park department does some restoration.  In the photo above, note the bench overlooking the stream and island,  with no weed wall in the way of the view.


george schaller said...

Thank you MM,
We have a new shierff in Allentown's mayor and he seems to really value children at play!

Guy Williams said...

I too remember the parkway as a child and its manicured state. Seems like the water flow diminished. Any reason ? Also the weeping willows werent replaced as they died off. Waterway Used to be completely lined as i recall.