15 Circulation – Walkways

The Rustic Landscape of Rim Village, 1927-1941





Promenade The promenade, constructed between 1928 and 1931 along the crater rim, was the primary pedestrian circulation system for the village. The walk was 2525 feet long (from the lodge to a point 380 feet west of the Crater Wall trailhead), 8 feet wide, and surfaced with a bituminous paving. The walk closely followed the edge of the rim, gently curving and winding to take advantage of splendid views and vistas to the lake. Before the end of the 1928 construction season, split-stone steps were under construction, leading from the cafeteria plaza to the Crater Wall Trail. In 1930, walks in the vicinity of the Crater Wall Trail were staked and also under construction. Water pipe was layed under these paths for the drinking fountain in the parapet wall. In 1932, the promenade was extended east of the lodge, to the Garfield Peak Trail.
Crosswalks Secondary paths or “crosswalks” between Rim Village Road and the crater wall were planned as early as 1929 but not constructed until 1931. Observing visitors at the rim over a number of years, it became apparent that random circulation and social paths over the site were having a negative impact on newly established vegetation. By the following year, several crosswalks were in place (with the exception of the ones planned for the area directly west of the lodge). These walks were narrower than the main promenade, ranging in width between 4 and 6 feet, and were designed to echo the curving nature of the promenade while routing visitors to various activity centers and focal points.Walkways to the three observation bays were completed between 1931 and 1935. In 1931 the trail to the Sinnott Memorial was realigned from a steep trail directly above the site, to a more gentle slope west of the building. Two sets of cut-stone steps and 220 feet of paved walk were completed that year to assist visitors in accessing the memorial. Walkways in the bay directly below the lodge were paved in 1932, and the Mather Bay was paved sometime after 1934. Other walks completed between 1934 and 1938 include the walk through the circular loop in front of the lodge (1934-35); the walk in front of the cafeteria (1935-36); and the walks around the plaza comfort station (1938).

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