freeway park

I was wandering around downtown the other day. I was near the convention center when I noticed this long, unmarked set of stairs leading up the side of a building. I followed them.

Turns out I had found one of the many back ways in to Freeway Park (wikipedia). I had never even heard of it. It is insane.

the scenic freeway overlook

The style is best described as Brutalist, which supposedly is from the French for "raw concrete". I think the literal interpretation is more fitting. This architecture is harsh.

the dungeon

I went down in the dungeon, or main gallery, or whatever the hell they call it. It's only a green tint away from being Minas Morgul, I swear.

Frodo cannot face the traffic window

I don't know what these 60s architects were thinking about. They had all these Utopian ideals and they made most oppressive, inhuman buildings ever. I've never understood why they thought those two things should go together.

the route the Hobbits took

Another really weird 60s thing that shines through, even though it wasn't finished until the 70s, is the love of the car. You thought it was called "Freeway Park" because it's near/over top of the interstate? No. It is in love with that road. There is a window, down in the dungeon, so that you can go gaze out at the traffic. Keep in mind, the dungeon is considered the park's central feature.

Sensibilities have moved on though. There seems to be no attempt to keep the window clear enough to see through anymore.

A window to the fuUuuuUuture?
We've seen it, driven it, spray painted over it.

For all it's harshness though, the squirrels are really friendly and the green parts are really green. It's actually a great little park, right on the edge of everything.

They come right up to you.


Pfepftzet Oout said...

Just don't go there after dark. It's infamous for its crime. Specifically rape and murder. Otherwise, it's a great park to get lost in (or stumble over a past out junkie).

leff said...

according to wikipedia they did some clean up work starting in 2005, and it's less bad now. I didn't see a lot of evidence of junkies, except in the dungeon area.

Pfepftzet Oout said...

That's good to hear. I haven't been there since probably 2005. It was pretty close to where I use to live, so I would walk through it sometimes, and back then it was full of junkies and homeless folks passed out in all its hidden corners.