Call them robber barons or conservationists, the Rockefeller family did something pretty generous: They took swatches of land, big and small, and kept them partly or entirely open, according to a Times piece today about the awarding tonight of the Audubon Medal. Yes, Rockefeller Center is filled with lots of office space, but it also devotes a fair amount to public plazas. Elsewhere in the metro area, the family was behind the tiny, waterfall-filled Greenacre Park near Third Ave. and 51st St.; parts of Fort Tryon Park and the Cloisters in upper Manhattan as well as the Palisades (seen from the New York side, above), the tree-covered cliffs across the Hudson in New Jersey; and farther up the river, part of the family's Westchester County estate is a preserve. That's not to mention other larger areas devoted to conservation from Maine to Wyoming.
· They Saved Land Like Rockefellers [NYT]
· Audubon Medal: 'Doing the Right Thing' [Audubon]
The Rockefellers as Conservationists