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Philadelphia

Fairmount Park

Fairmount Park is the municipal park system of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It consists of 63 parks, with 9,200 acres (3,700 ha), all overseen by the Philadelphia Department of Parks and Recreation, successor to the Fairmount Park Commission in 2010.

Fairmount Park Proper:
The park system is named after its first park, Fairmount Park, which occupies nearly half the area of the whole system, at over 4,100 acres (1,700 ha). Today, the commission divides the original park into East and West Fairmount parks. The original domain of Fairmount Park consisted of three areas: "South Park" or the South Garden immediately below the Fairmount Water Works extending to the Callowhill Street Bridge; East or "Old Park" which encompassed the former estates of Lemon Hill and Sedgeley; and West Park, the area now comprising the Philadelphia Zoo and the Centennial Exposition grounds.

The South Garden predated the establishment of the Park Commission in 1867 and Lemon Hill and Sedgley were added in 1855–56. After the Civil War, work progressed on acquiring and laying out West Park. In the 1870s, the Fairmount Park Commission acquired industrial properties along the Wissahickon Creek although this is not considered Fairmount Park proper. Likewise the Schuylkill River Trail is a modern addition and was not included in 19th-century acquisitions.

Properties:
Today, the system includes the Centennial Arboretum, Philadelphia's Horticulture Center, Fairmount Water Works, Memorial Hall, home to the Please Touch Museum, the Belmont Plateau, Japanese House and Garden, Bartram's Garden (America’s oldest living botanical garden), Philadelphia Museum of Art, Boathouse Row, Azalea Garden, recreation centers, reservoirs, and countless statues (as well as other pieces of art) as determined by the park.

Public Art:
Fairmount Park is home to a large collection of public art, largely due to the efforts of the Fairmount Park Art Association, a non-profit organization founded in 1872 to embellish Fairmount Park with outdoor sculpture, including the Florentine Lions installed in 1887. The Art Association continues to commission and care for a large number of sculptures, in coordination with the park and city. In 2007, the Art Association installed Iroquois by Mark di Suvero near the Philadelphia Museum of Art on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.