Emphasizing the Urban Angle of National Parks

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has said he wants to bring park programs back into the lives of urban dwellers. This piece argues that a good place for him to start is one of the few urban national parks at St. Louis' Gateway Arch.
July 13, 2009, 7am PDT | Nate Berg
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The Secretary reportedly wants to expand the idea of National Parks beyond Yellowstone and Yosemite and get more urban dwellers to access the facilities their metro areas have.

"He has said he wants to engage more children and encourage underrepresented groups to participate in parks programs. Metropolitan areas are fertile grounds for such initiatives. They are where 80 percent of America's people live.

Urban centers largely have been second-class citizens throughout the celebrated history of the National Park System. St. Louis' Gateway Arch, and the national park in which it is situated, stands out as an exception - a soaring symbol of a great historical movement and cherished element of the American character."

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Published on Friday, July 10, 2009 in STL Today
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