How a 350-Year-Old Garden Influenced New York's 9/11 Memorial

This year marks the 400th anniversary of the birth of gardener Andre Le Notre. Eleanor Beardsley traces the legacy of the designer of the gardens at Versailles, whose visionary work influenced many, including landscape architect Peter Walker.

"Andre Le Notre was born in 1613 into a family of royal gardeners, but he would take the profession way beyond a trade. That's according to Jacques Moulin, Versailles' current gardener — or architect — the 30th since Le Notre."

"Le Notre transformed the profession of gardener into a high-level royal service and turned his trade into a grand art," Moulin says. "He became the interlocutor of kings and princes across Europe and built a huge art collection."

According to Architect Georges Farhat, who helped assemble the exhibit on Le Notre being hosted at Versailles, the designer's impact diffused far beyond the bounds of royal gardens. "Fahrat says the roots of modern urban planning can be found in the gardens of Versailles, with its avenues and allies radiating to infinity."

Another acolyte is landscape architect Peter Walker, whose Sept. 11 memorial was inspired by "the void evoked in Le Notre's waterfalls at the far end of the Vaux le Vicomte gardens' grand axis."

Full Story: Royal Gardener Planted The Seed Of Urban Planning At Versailles

Comments

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $14.95 a month
Book cover of Insider's Guide to Careers in Urban Planning

So you want to be a planner...

Check out our behind the scenes look at 25 careers in the Urban Planning field
Starting at $14.95
poster

A Short History of America

From comic book artist Robert Crumb, poster shows how the built environment has changed throughout the decades.
$14.95