Thursday, December 6, 2012

Old Winter Park Road

In the story “Joyce Kilmer Was Right!,” Sarah (Mrs. Joe K) Galloway illustrates changes in society as the ladies of the Winter Park community engaged in activism in order to save the trees of the Old Winter Park Road. Prior to the 1950s, the Old Winter Park Road was a “nature country –like tree-line”[1] road that connected the city of Winter Park to Orlando. However, during the 1950s due to an increase of traffic the commissioners of Winter Park ordered the widening of the Old Winter Park Road, which required cutting down the trees around it. The ladies efforts were ineffective as the road did get widen, however, today the Winter Park Road consist of a wider road as well as tall beautiful trees. Along with the representation of the social changes the United States was experiencing post World War II, the widening of the Old Winter Park Road also reflects the urbanization the United States was undergoing at the time. However did urbanization continue to affect Winter Park after the 1950s?
This picture illustrates how the Winter Park Road looks like in the year 2012. Despite the trees being cut down in order to widen the road, like the Old Winter Park Road in the 1950s, in 2012 this road continues to have the tall beautiful trees that hover over the street.
Although Winter Park Road continued to have the tall beautiful trees, it did go through some major changes. In the 1950s the Old Winter Park Road was a country-like tree-line road, however, along with its widening there was also an addition of houses constructed on each side of the road.

Furthermore, in the 1950s the Old Winter Park Road connected the city of Winter Park to the city of Orlando and the widening of the road was due to an increase of traffic at the time. The picture above is the Interstate 4 ramp on Fairbanks Avenue, Winter Park FL 

The Interstate 4 ramp on Fairbanks Avenue is an alternative route that connects the city of Winter Park to the city of Orlando. While the Winter Park did get widen, as show in the picture, I-4 is twice its width. Nonetheless, the twofold of I-4’s width is an accommodation of the continuous increase of traffic between the two cities.

The collection of pictures shown above depicts how both urbanization and metropolitanization has continued to change Winter Park Florida. Post 1950s the automobile and real estate developer shaped the cities in Florida. These cities were characterized by low-density development, small urban centers, and horizontal sprawl, which classified them as metropolitan areas. Furthermore, throughout the 1950s and 1960s an urban sprawl fed the suburbs. Although there was an increase of families living in the suburbs, their jobs were still located in downtowns. Consequently, commuting became an everyday normality and thus created what geographers called the phenomenon of cities and counties growing and blending together, conurbation.  This not only explicates the increase of traffic, but it also explains why houses now surround the Winter Park Road. In fact, Winter Park could be considered a suburb since it is a community of houses located outside of the city of Orlando.  Moreover, commuting continues to play a role for the residents of Winter Park as the drive to their jobs located in downtown as well as other areas of Orlando. Additionally, post 1950s urbanization and metropolitanization also elucidates why there are alternative routes that connect Winter Park to Orlando, specifically, the wider Interstate 4 that connects Fairbanks Avenue in Winter Park directly to the downtown of Orlando.


[1] Sarah (Mrs. Joe K) Galloway, Tales of Winter Park, Joyce Kilmer Was Right,76.

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