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Holyoke (Mass.).

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Plunger,


.50


E. D. Wells,


Scythe,


1.00


John H. Delaney,


Paint,


1.20


Haarman & Dedrich,


Forging,


1.25


John H. Delaney,


Paint,


4.50


New Eng. Tel. & Tel. Co.


, Telephone,


2.08


New Eng. Tel. & Tel. Co.


, Telephone,


2.08


G. E. Russell,


Supplies, .


4.74


Transcript Pub Co.


Printing.


12.25


George Murphy,


Repairs,


4.75


Merrick Lumber Co.,


Lumber,


5.33


Sullivan & Carmody,


Hose, etc.,


26.60


Daniel O'Connell's Sons,


Teams,


2.82


Daniel O'Connell's Sons,


Teams,


135.00


A. F. Gingras,


Team,


16.75


Crosby Hardware Store,


Supplies,


6.29



525 86



Holyoke City Hospital Land,



$ 279.97
$5,550.00



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REPORT OF PARK COMMISSIONERS





OCTOBER.




Samuel Beaulieu,




Filling,


$274.35


A. F. Gingras,




Team,


36.50


J. J. Prew,




Masonry,


55.45


Parfitt Art and Dec. (


Do,


Signs,


2.50


Daniel O'Connell's Sons,


Teams,


85.50


Daniel O'Connell's Sons,


Teams,


4.50


Crosby Hardware Store,


Supplies,


13.40


J. Russell & Co.,




Supplies,


3.50


W. T. Dean,




Paste,


.55


E. F. Dreikorn,




Paint,


4.85


Doane & Williams,




Lumber,


28.27


G. E. Russell,




Supplies,


10.14


New Eng. Tel. & Tel.


Co.


, Telephone,


2.08


New Eng. Tel. & Tel.


Co.


, Telephone,


2.08


E. D. Wells.




Supplies,


10.35


J. J. Slattery,




Piping,


203.00




NOVEMBER.




Daniel O'Connell's Sons,


Teams,


$9.00


Daniel O'Connell's Sons,


Teams,


157.00


Daniel O'Connell's Sons,


Teams,


103.50


New Eng. Tel. & Tel.


Co.


, Telephone,


2.08


New Eng. Tel. & Tel.


Co.


, Telephone,


2.08


Patrick Fitzgerald,




Teams,


18.00


Albert A. Paquette,




Repairs,


1.15


E. D. Wells,




.Shovels, etc.


4.30


Louis Bibeau,




Oil,


.24


Doane & Williams,




Lumber,


11.38


W. T. Dean,




Paint,


3.05


Holyoke Water Works,


Service,


5.50


G. E. Russell,




Shovels,


8.00


Crosby Hardware Store,


Supplies,


5.25


Holyoke St. Ry. Co.,




Fare book,


5.00



$ 737.02



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REPORT OF PARK COMMISSIONERS



2 93



Casper Ranger, Labor, 4.00

Daniel J. Hartnett, Freight, 1.35

Wm. II. .Morehouse, Cartage, 2.00

Kennedy & .Sullivan, Repairs, .60

Marcotte & Paquette, Milk can, 1.00

Michael Cleary, Repairs, 8.00

Dillon Bros., Team, 9.00

Sheldon's Transfer, Cartage, 12.00

Frank G .Bray, Team, 20.25

Thomas Bray, Team, 18.00

Samuel Beaulieu, Team, 55.80

Samuel Beaulieu, Team, 18.00



$ 485.53



DECEMBER.



Lewis Lamberton,
Daniel J. Hartnett,
Aug. Vogt ,
Burrington Motor Works,
Hoi. Valve & Hydrant Co.
Merrick Lumber Co.,
New Eng. Tel. & Tel. Co.,
New Eng. Tel. & Tel. Co.,
Prentiss, Brooks & Co.,
C. H. Rackliffe,
Samuel Beaulieu,
M. J. Kearns,
E. D. Wells.
Crosby Hardware Store,
Casper Ranger,
Casper Ranger,
G. E. Russell,
Field & Sinclair,
Daniel O'Connell's Sons,
Daniel O'Connell's Sons,
J. W. Adams,
Fitzgerald & Co.,



Ashes,

Services,

Cartage,

Pump,

,Pipe,

Lumber,

Telephone,

Telephone,

Cement,

Shovel,

Teams,

Repairs,

Sundries,

Sundries,

Settees,

Painting,

Sundries,

Bulbs,

Teams,

Teams,

Shrubs,

Time books,



$33.25

125.00

2.50

4.00

2.25

8.47

2.08

2.08

1.30

2.25

56.25

2.30

4.65

10.95

31.74

6.13

7.55

43.70

18.00

4.50

4.20

.30



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294 REPORT OF PARK COMMISSIONERS

A. F. Gingras,
A. F. Gingras,
Mt. Hope Nurseries,
W. B. Whittier,
Edw. Gillett,
Patrick Fitzgerald,
Dillon Bros.,
Holyoke Ice Co.,
Holyoke Ice Co.,
Holyoke Ice Co.,
Holyoke Ice Co.,
Holyoke Ice Co.,



Team,


41.75


Team,


28.75


Shrubs,


4.25


Shrubs.


53.98


.Shrubs.


3.00


Teams,


56.25


Teams,


58.50


Ice,


45 70


Ice,


37.93


Ice,


43.30


Ice,


50.70


Ice,


16.27



$ 813.83



In conclusion we can only add that we trust due con-
sideration will be given the foregoing suggestions which
we consider all necessary and urgent; especially do we ask
for a generous sum for land additions. The trend of the
present day in all progressive cities is for the enlargement
of park areas and playgrounds. We are at the present
time far behind the average city in this respect and it is
our ambition to place Holyoke at least with the average
city, and to form the nucleus of a park system that will be
a pride to her citizens.

To the Engineering Department is due credit for the
progress made in the last year by their co-operation and
assistance for. which we are greatly obliged.

We submit this report to you with the hope that it may
have your approval and consideration.

Very respectfully,

CHARLES E. MACKINTOSH,
WM. J. HOWES,
JAMES F. BURNS,
SAMUEL GRANDCHAMP,
MAX O. DREIKORN,

Board of Park Commissioners.
Holyoke, Mass., Dec. 23, 1907.



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Preliminary Report of Frederick L. Olmsted, Jr.
Relative to Beautifying the City of Holyoke.



To Hon. N. P. Avery, Mayor of Holyoke.

Dear Sir: — The following report, prepared and submit-
ted in accordance with your request, deals with such oppor-
tunities for general improvement in the physical aspects of
Holyoke as are apparent to a stranger who visits the city
with an observing eye and with some technical knowledge
of municipal conditions and developments elsewhere. It
does not pretend to thoroughness or to any conclusiveness
of judgment as to the relative importance of the matters
considered, but lays the observations and suggestions before
you for what they may seem to be worth.

In the first place the observer is struck by the fact that
the opportunity for generating a large amount of water
power was by no means the only imporatnt natural advan-
tage of Holyoke as the site of an industrial community.
Its soil topography and situation are such as to facilitate the
maintenance of public health and to permit the development
of a convenient transportation system by street and by rail,
and the landscape character of this part of the Connecticut
river, of the range of western hills, and of the surrounding
country in general, is such as offer notable opportunities
for recreation and for making the city a thoroughly agree-
able place in which to work and to live.

It is very unlikely that the people of Holyoke generally
have any realization of the large value of the natural re-
sources and opportunities virtually at their control, to utilize
or to preserve for future utilization or to waste and destroy



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296 CITY BEAUTIFUL

by neglect. They have probably been in the situation of the
American people as a whole, not unlike that of some spoiled
children of wealthy parents; bewildered by more opportuni-
ties and resources than they have yet learned to utilize
effectively, they are apt in the eagerness with which they
pursue certain ends either to waste and neglect or reck-
lessly to sell for a pittance other values that they have not
yet had time to appreciate but which they will sorely regret
as time brings greater experience and greater managing
ability.

To consider for a moment only the opportunities for
out-door recreation and landscape enjoyment, matters which
experience is proving to have a very real influence on the
health, happiness and economic efficiency of industrial com-
munities. Ilolyoke has in the waters and shores of the Con-
necticut river, and in the spacious scenery of which the
river is the heart, commanded as it is from many en elevated
outlook, an asset of immense future value if wisely con-
served and utilized. It is very little used at present and
might readily be made to bring in a much greater public
income of pleasure and recreation by a moderate expendi-
ture for making it more conveniently available, but its
greatest value lies in the future when the need of the com-
munity for such opportunities of recreation shall be greater
and more pressing. The fact that perhaps not ten people
in a year's time now visit a certain point of view looking
out over the river, that it is at present hard to get at. and
that there are too many branches of trees obscuring the out-
look to permit its full appreciation, does not alter the fact
that the landscape is such a one as artists have devoted their
lives to interpreting, such as brings a real refreshment and
inspiration to those who look upon it even though they be
quite innocent of conscious analysis of their appreciation.
and such as will therefore afford pleasure and health of
spirit to thousands of people in the future if the opportunity
is preserved and ultimately developed.



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CITY BEAUTIFUL 2 97

The same kind of considerations apply to much of the
landscape of the hill country west of the town and espe-
cially to that lying about the reservoirs, as discussed more
specifically.

But before coming to specific comments upon the oppor-
tunities and needs which appealed to us in our rapid survey
of Holyoke, in order to maintain some rational order in
what must be rather fragmentary remarks, we beg to point
out certain divisions of the subject to which we shall ad-
here.

The physical aspect of a city as affecting its conven-
ience and attractiveness for residence and business pur-
poses is mainly dependent, so far as it is under direct muni-
cipal control, upon the distribution and treatment of three
kinds of spaces: First, public and quasi-public ways, in-
cluding streets, alleys, railways, canals and water courses;
second, areas devoted specifically to public recreation ; third,
other public grounds and buildings.

Our observations were confined practically to the first
two subjects and are discussed under the following heads :

1. Public and quasi-public ways.

Location of ways:

Main thoroughfares and local streets.

Electric railways.

Steam railways.

Example, Northampton street.

Example, Roads to the west.

Mainteance and improvemens of ways:

Street surfacing.

Street trees.

Overhead wires and poles.

Other highway accessories.

Treatment of canals.



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298 CITY BEAUTIFUL

n. Public recreation grounds.

Playgrounds.

Function of neighborhood recreation grounds.
Selection of sites.

Special park sites:

Prospect Park.
North Bluff.
South Bluff.
The River's edge.
Outlying reservations.

I. PUBLIC AND QUASI-PUBLIC WAYS.
Location of ways :

The layout of public ways is one of the most funda-
mentally important matters affecting the development of a
city, because no features in the strucure of a city except
large water courses and great hills are so permanent, so
hard to change, none more seriously affect the convenience
and economy of daily life, and few have so great an influ-
ence in determining the distribution and character of all
the other structures and improvements.

In all the central part of Holyoke the street layout is
fully determined, for the most part reasonably well, and
there is no need of praising its good points or pointing out
where it might have been bettered. The street system is
fully developed, however, within an area occupying con-
siderably less than a fifth of the whole city, and in the grad-
ual prosperous growth of the population this percentage is
steadily increasing. In the ten years ending with 1906
the extent of accepted streets was increased 25 1-2 per cent.
Looking to the distant future there is no public problem in
the present determination of which keen and farseeing in-
telligence will bring a greater return than in this matter



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CITY BEAUTIFUL 299

of the layout of public ways in those parts of the city not
now fully developed in that regard.

City streets usually get laid out in one of three ways.
Some are old country thoroughfares absorbed into the grow-
ing town. These are apt to be tolerably direct and conven-
ient lines of travel between important points, especially on
radial lines between the central business district of the city
and subordinate outlying centers; but they are apt to be
much too narrow for the traffic ultimately thrown un/)n them
unless they are widened in good season, and, especially in a
hilly region, they are sometimes impeded by steep grades or
bad turns the elimination of which may have seemed too
costly in proportion to the original country traffic but which
later put a burden upon the dense urban traffic for the re-
moval of which the city would gladly pay many times the
original saving, with compound interest to boot.

Unfortunately, by the time this state of mind is reached
the street is usually lined with properties so valuable that
any radical change has become prohibitively costly and the
inconvenience and burden of the steep grade or the danger-
ous corner has to be endured for generations or for cen-
turies.

Other city streets are laid out by land owners solely
as a means of giving access to the maximum number of mar-
ketable lots within the tract they are subdividing, and are
subsequently accepted by the city. Unless the tract is a
very large one or rather remote from existing main thor-
oughfares, streets laid out in this way are usually devised
only to meet purely Local needs, are therefore relatively
narrow, and if they do afford any through lines of com-
munication of value to the business of the city at large do
so only in an incidental way, by accident, and usually in a
more or less inadequate and unsatisfactory manner.

In the third place, it sometimes happens that the muni-
cipal authorities or large land companies lay out compre-
hensive street plans with the deliberate intention of provid-



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300 CITY BEAUTIFUL

ing adequately and conveniently for the general and
through traffic as well as for merely local access to private
land frontage. This last was done in the original layout of
the central part of Holyoke and has been done and is being
done every year by many progressive American cities in a
more or less successful manner.

The difficulty with many of these deliberately adopted
street plans has been twofold. In the first place they have
been too rigid, so that the blocks have turned out to be in-
conveniently small in some districts (as for example where
large manufacturing plants have developed, necessitating
either the abandonment of some of the streets or the incon-
venient separation of different parts of the same plant by
public thoroughfares) and have turned out to be inconveni-
ently large in other districts (as for example in the cheaper
residence districts, where land has been wasted in the backs
of long lots or where inconvenient and unsanitary "back
tenements' ' have been put up behind the buildings on the
street frontage in order to utilize the land more fully. In the
second placejn attempting to settle at one time the layout of
all the streets that would ever be needed in a large territory,
the projectors of such plans have usually been led to do
their planning hastily and without very careful or thorough
study of grades or of the relation of the streets to the nat-
ural conditions of the ground, so that while the final result
may be on the average pretty good, it may happen that few,
if any, of the streets afford first-class lines of travel on
easy grades and that most of them cost a good deal more to
construct than if they had been carefully laid out with re-
gard to the slone and character of the ground and the re-
quirements of the probable traffic after the manner always
employed in fixing a railroad location.

Main Thoroughfares and Local Streets.

On the whole the wisest policy appears to be that of
distinguishing clearly between main thoroughfares and local



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CITY BEAUTIFUL 3OI

streets, and of laying out on paper long in advance, a toler-
ably complete system of consisting main thoroughfares only
for the whole city, some following existing streets without
proposal of change, some following existing ways but propos-
ing certain widenings, straightenings, extensions or changes
of grade, and some wholly independent of existing ways.
With such a system of well planned main thoroughfares on
file, as a basis subject to revision and improvement, it is pos-
sible from time to time for city officials, by keeping watch
upon the development of outlying districts, to secure the
widenings and other condemnations necessary for the ulti-
mate establishment of the main thoroughfares in advance of
prohibitive increase of real estate values, but without bur-
dening the city with a lot of needless streets by precipitate
action; while the provision of intermediate local streets can
safely be left in large measure to the initiative of the land
owners as at present.

Electric Railways.

The purpose of any system of main thoroughfares is of
course to facilitate the transportation of goods and people
between points of a city not closely adjacent by concentrat-
ing such travel in streams of sufficient volume to justify the
cost of obtaining for them especially good grades, espe-
cially easy and durable pavements and other facilities for
rapid and cheap transportation. One of the quickest and
cheapest means of transportation for passengers is of course
the electric railway, and the systematic arrangement of loca-
tions for such railway lines, both within streets devoted to
other forms of wheeled traffic and upon special rights of
way for the safe attainment of higher speeds on the longer
trunk lines forms a distinct part of the main thoroughfare
problem. The adequate development of the trolley system
with a view to the interests of the city as a whole will have
a marked influence upon the latitude of choice open to the
average working man in the selection of his dwelling place.



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302 CITY BEAUTIFUL

and by thus giving him opportunity of securing greater
comfort, healthfulness and economy in his home will con-
duce to greater efficiency and lower cost of production in
the industries of the city. ,Some one representing the inter-
ests of the city as a whole ought therefore, in connection
with any general study of street layout, to take an active
and constructive part in the planning for future extensions
and improvements in the electric railway lines operating
in the city. Any such planning to be of real value must be
done in close co-operation with the management of the lines,
and such co-operation is very difficult to bring about; but
the possible results are worth much persistent effort.

Unless such active and constructive co-operation is
brpught about, the practical alternative is for the city to
leave the initiative in developing the railways system ex-
clusively to the representatives of the investors and to oc-
cupy a position of more or less obstructive criticism toward
their proposals whenever they are not conspicuously for
the immediate advantage of the public. This anatgonistie
attitude and the lack of correlation between plans for future
improvements in highway layout and plans for the electric
railway layout cannot result in the best and most economical
service to the people or in the largest fair profit to the rail-
way investors, and it is an attitude which constantly offers
an inducement to underhand dealings between agents of
the two parties, to a policy of secrecy and indirection on
the part of the public service corporations, and to munici-
pal corruption.

Steam Railways.

The steam railways, although less intimately connected
with the problems of street layout than the electric rail-
ways, nevertheless are involved as a part of the main thor-
oughfare system, because convenience, safety and economy
in the method of providing for crossings of the steam roads
with the main streets and electric lines affect all parties



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CITY BEAUTIFUL 303

concerned and the best results are usually to be secured only
by adjustments on the part of all the parties. Moreover, it
is essential to the success of a manufacturing community
that the facilities of the railroads, especially for handling
freight, should be such as to make for speed and economy
of operation. Ample and convenient trackage and room
for railroad expansion ought to be allowed for in planning
street improvements and in laying out parks and other pub-
lic works, while on the other hand it is important for the
city to see that freight yards and other items of railroad
equipment are not located needlessly, in such a way as to
interfere with public improvements that are likely to be re-
quired in the future or so as to depreciate property values
in districts better adapted to residence than to commerce.
Upon this subject of the main transportation lines of
the city we can only speak thus in general terms, because it
is so complex a problem that we could not intelligently form
any definite opinions as to what should be done Upon the
basis of our brief examination of the situation. Just by
way of example, however, it may be well to refer to two
examples taken somewhat at random.
Example — Northampton Street.

Northampton street, apart from its local functions,
serves as the main highway for through travel north and
south along the west side of the Connecticut river, and with
the steady, gradual secular growth of population in the
Connecticut valley towns and in the increase in the demands
of general travel by trolley, by automobile and by other
vehicles, the volume of traffic thrown upon this street by
outside development entirely apart from the growth of Hol-
yoke is likely to be enormously greater than anything this
generation has been thinking about. At the same time the
growth of Holyoke itself is pushing steadily westward so
that Northampton street, which lay entirely beyond the
original development as planned by the Pow r er Company,
has already become recognized as within the westerly edge



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304 CITY BEAUTIFUL

of urban development, and Is destined before long to be-
come one of the main arteries of the residential district.
A recognition of its growing importance has led to the im-
provement of certain portions of the street, but at places
it is extremely narrow and nowhere has it a breadth com-
mensurate with the probable importance of its future traffic.
A considerable development of building is likely to take
place along it within the next few years, and although there
appears to be a disposition on the part of those who build
here to set their houses back pretty well from the present
street line, there is no telling when costly improvements
may be put in close to the line, greatly to the embarrass-
ment of the city when the widening is forced upon it. Pro-
vision clearly ought to be made for a great thoroughfare
from the West Springfield lines to the Northampton line,
having space within its side line not only for ample road
surface, but for electric car tracks on a separate reserva-
tion and for rows of spreading elm treets such as have for
years given the main streets of so many Connecticut river
towns their characteristic beauty. It is a matter for close
and deliberate study whether such a thoroughfare can be
most economically and advantageously obtained by follow-
ing throughout the present line of Northampton street.
Ingleside street and the Southern end of Springfield street,
or by adopting in whole or in part a new route more or less
parallel thereto. Again it is a question for close and busi-
nesslike investigation how fast it will pay to proceed with
the acquisition of property for such a thoroughfare and
with its construction. But there can be no question that it
will pay to look into the matter promptly and after decid-
ing on the most feasible boundaries take steps to prevent
the erection of new buildings within them.

Example — Roads to the West.

The above is cited merely as an instance. Other exam-
ples may be found in the ultimate necessity for first rate



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CITY BEAUTIFUL 305

thoroughfares connecting the heart of the city with its west-
ern territory and the country beyond. The present roads
afford remarkably charming drives, so far as scenery is con-
cerned, but for practical purposes and for comfort in the
enjoyment of the scenery, they leave much to be desired.
They have some dangerous bends and many excessively
steep grades which cannot be materially improved on the
present location and which will not only offer a serious per-


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