Professional Practice
Documented Historic Landscapes

Since HALS was established in 2000 to document our country's dynamic landscapes, much progress has been made in identifying and documenting historically significant designed and vernacular cultural landscapes. As documentation is submitted, the full list of HALS sites continues to grow. At the start of 2014, information on more than 450 sites was accessible on the Library of Congress’ website. There are more than 600 sites on the current list.

Below are a selection of documented HALS sites from across the United States that focus on a shared theme or feature, with links to the selected landscapes' documentation on the Library of Congress’ website. This page will be updated periodically to highlight different themes.

HALS Highlights:

2015 HALS Challenge: Documenting Modernist Landscapes

Since 2010, landscape architecture preservation enthusiasts from every state have been challenged to complete at least one HALS short format history to increase awareness of particular cultural landscapes. The 2014 HALS Challenge, Documenting Landscapes of the New Deal, received 47 entries—the most ever. This year's theme is modernist landscapes, and highlighted below are three modernist sites that have already been documented.

Kaiser Center, HALS CA-3
Oakland, CA
Significance: First private roof garden built after WWII; largest continuous roof garden in the world in 1960; first major example of post-war modernism on a rooftop; technological innovations in roof garden design inspired future public and private roof gardens.

Skyline Park, HALS CO-1
Denver, CO
Significance: Lawrence Halprin (b. 1916) is an internationally acclaimed landscape architect and urban designer. His firm, Lawrence Halprin Associates of San Francisco, California, produced numerous designs revered for their attention to principles of interactive human use, attention to ecological predicates, and inventive sculptural forms and spaces. Skyline Park, a small linear park located in the heart of downtown Denver, exemplifies Halprin’s theoretical positions and reflected these ideals through its careful orchestration of sculptural concrete forms.

Fleming Gardens, HALS CA-43
Berkeley, CA
Significance: The Fleming Garden is an excellent and inspiring example of a privately-owned, all-native residential garden in California, and a remarkable testimony to the power of impassioned amateurs. Scott Fleming – lawyer by vocation, builder by avocation – shaped the steep hillside site 1951-55, guided by the plot plan of modern architect Elizabeth Witkin. He built retaining walls, paths, waterfall, and stream in a naturalistic style 1956-71, while Jenny Fleming – nurse-homemaker by vocation, gardener by avocation – selected and placed plants.