Master Plan Part II

II

MASTER PLAN

General and Boundaries

In recent years Georgians have come to realize that a properly planned and developed Stone Mountain Memorial Park would be an economic asset of tremendous value to the state. It could capture a bigger share of the growing vacation and tourist business, by providing a new and wonderful attraction for the travel, sightseeing and recreation minded people of Georgia and the whole country.

It is important to point out the widespread support that completion of Stone Mountain Memorial Park enjoys in Atlanta and Georgia. The desire to pay homage to the Confederate leaders is still important, but it is now probably secondary to the economic motive. Because of a considerable publicity for several years, Stone Mountain became almost a household word, and is today one of the better known natural phenomena in the nation.

The Stone Mountain Memorial Association indicated a program of de- velopment which provided the basis of the Master Plan and Report indicating a suitable scheme for public recreational use of Stone Mountain as a guide of future development, with the following major groups of facilities: (1) Recreational, (2) Commemorative, (3) Educational and Scientific, (4) Facilities and Services, (5) Circulation, (6) Lakes, (7) Utilities, (8) Landscaping.

The Stone Mountain Memorial Association has now under its jurisdiction 2,500 acres of land, and intends to acquire an additional 1,500 acres, which means that they will have 4,000 acres of land suitable for park development.. The present property boundaries of Stone Mountain Memorial Park roughly form a rectangle two by two and a half miles. The boundaries extend generally from the city limits of Stone Mountain westward almost to the DeKalb County line on the east and from just north of the new location of U. S. Highway 78 on the north to a quarter of a mile north of Rockbridge Road on the south.

Recreational

Leisure time in the last 10 years increased immensely and is reflected in the billions of dollars spent today in the U.S.A. for travel and recreation. Vacations are now becoming longer and more frequent and, therefore, it increases the attendance of all resort, recreational and attraction places.

Every year more people realize that recreation improves living conditions, helps to offset the many disadvantages of city life and provides for the best use of leisure time.

Recreational places and the public are interrelated and this relationship presents an exceedingly puzzling problem. What makes one tourist attraction place a big success, another a failure? One reason is the failure to realize that here the individual counts more than in a city, he must be made to feel that everything is planned and designed for his individual needs and desires, for his convenience This is what we tried to do, by providing for active and passive recreation, and to satisfy the requirements of as many visitors as possible.

One of the most important features in the development of the park is the creation of the big lake, small and medium size landscaped ponds, the scenic drives and trails closely related to them. The big lake will come close to the base of the mountain and will encircle it approximately two-thirds of the way. The dam holding the big lake will be in the southeasterly corner where the natural out fall of surface water now flows.

The scenic drives around these lakes will provide many attractive views of the mountain across the water areas. These drives will be landscaped with beautiful plant material, bordered with parking areas, picnic areas, benches, shelters and will add greatly to the natural beauty and utility of the park

Sightseeing and fishing boats will be made available at various points along the waterfront. A boat dock, storage and repair shop, is proposed in the vicinity of the administration building. Fishing piers will be constructed at various points.

Playfields and organized game areas will be so located that the memorial area north of the mountain will be entirely free of non-conforming and conflicting day-use developments.

An open air theater will be located in the vicinity of the administration building for meetings, entertainment and worship services.

Commemorative

Atlanta's vicinity with its rich historical background is the proper place to give the American public information of this past as well as to pay tribute to those who have been the leaders of this past struggle.

The idea of a gigantic carving on the face of Stone Mountain as a memorial to the men who made sacrifices for the Confederacy caught the imagination of the American public as few events of its type ever have. This interest has increased in the last years in line with the general trend of the tourist trade.

Visitors, individuals and groups, will be told the story of the memorial carving at the information center located in the administration building. The area below the memorial carving and in front of the administration building will be beautifully landscaped and surrounded with dignity and serenity.

A final determination on the finishing of the carving has not yet been arrived at.

Educational and Scientific

The museum is conceived as a historically correct building with the flavor and atmosphere which prevailed during the Civil War. The permanent exhibit will be a collection of battlefield souvenirs, Civil War relics, maps, pictures, and perhaps a diorama. Everything will be done to make this museum an outstanding exhibition of the War Between the States.

Another historical exhibit will be the Margaret Mitchell Memorial. The structure and the furnishings will be historically correct, in the manner found in a typical colonial home of the period. Adjacent, there will be slave quarters, a smokehouse, a carriage house, and a kitchen connected by gangway to the house. A permanent exhibit within will be a collection of photos from the movie "Gone With The Wind", and samples of the book in 50 languages.

The Botanical Garden is to be another educational feature of the Memorial. It will be a place for instruction in native plant material suited to the soil and climatic conditions of the area; exotic plant material will not be introduced into the Botanical Garden. The improvements in the Botanical Garden area are to be limited to the development of nature trails, the placing of name tags on significant plants along the trails, the planting and maintenance of native plants and the construction of a small picnic area with field toilet facilities. While the entire area of the Memorial is a bird sanctuary, it is expected that the Botanical Garden will be especially attractive to birds.



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