Lake Park, Milwaukee

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For other places called Lake Park, see Lake Park.
Lake Park
Lake park view from stairs - milwaukee.jpg
Location Milwaukee
Area Lake Front
Architect Frederick Law Olmsted
Architectural style Romantic
NRHP Reference # 93000339
Added to NRHP 1993

Lake Park, located on Lake Michigan in Milwaukee, Wisconsin,[1] is an urban park covering 138.1-acre (559,000 m2).[2]


Lake Park was designed in the late 19th century by Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed Central Park in New York City along with many others. Believing that access to nature had a civilizing and restorative effect on the urban public, Olmsted designed Lake Park in the Romantic tradition, with a preference for natural (over formal) landscaping, winding paths, a variety of vistas, incorporation of wildlife, and a balance between active recreation and more passive enjoyment.[3]


Lake Park in 1890. Historic North Point Lighthouse at horizon.

Covering 138.1-acre (559,000 m2) on the shore of Lake Michigan,[2] the park is part of a mostly contiguous stretch of lakefront amenities that extend north from Milwaukee's downtown, including Bradford Beach, various parks, McKinley Marina, and the Milwaukee Art Museum.

The park terrain includes both bluffs and ravines. In addition, Lake Park is home to the last remaining Indian mound in the city of Milwaukee. The others were destroyed by early settlers of the city and surrounding area.[3]

It also contains the North Point Lighthouse, which was built in 1855.

A 6-hole golf course was built in 1903, expanding to 18 holes in 1930.[3]

Pokémon GO[edit]

In July of 2016, the release of Niantic's viral mobile game "Pokémon GO" caused attendance at Lake Park to skyrocket when many citizens, who had never heard of the location, flocked there. Due to Lake Park's high volume of landmarks, it is a hot spot for Poké-Stops. In August 2016, Milwaukee County Parks issued a letter asking that Niantic remove the game stops until a permit is received, in compliance with a county ordinance.[4] This caused outrage among players of the game, and could also result in a boycott of the park system entirely.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gurda, John (2006). The Making of Milwaukee. Milwaukee, WI: Milwaukee County Historical Society. p. 203. ISBN 0-938076-14-0. 
  2. ^ a b "Lake Park" (PDF) (Map). Milwaukee County. July 2013. Retrieved November 3, 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c Knopfelmacher, Dolores. "History of Lake Park". Lake Park Friends. Retrieved May 28, 2016. 
  4. ^ Henry, Colleen (August 24, 2016). "Parks director: 'Pokemon Go' needs a permit for park play". WISN-TV. Retrieved August 25, 2016.