Carol I Park in Bucharest at the Beginning of the 20th Century

Ileana Maria PANŢU


The first stage of the evolution of Carol I park is important for the history of Romanian landscape architecture and also stands as an example for the design of parks nowadays. Carol I park was conceived at the beginning of the 20thcentury, as a national park, to host the “General Romanian Exhibition”, a jubilee exhibition celebrating 40 years since Carol the II became king of Romania, 25 years since the proclamation of the Kingdom and 1,800 years since Trajan‟s conquest of Dacia. The authorities invited the French landscape architect Édouard Redont to design this park - inaugurated in 1906. Redont worked in a mixed style, with an important part of romantic style, French landscape style, and a geometrical part in the entrance zone. These styles compounded a belle époque park, with a lot of pavilions for the exhibition. The composition of the park was centred on an important, large axis cadenced by lots of pavilions and geometrical vegetation and water elements with a hill over a lake as its perspective end. On this hill, the Palace of the Arts, and below it, an elegant romantic cascade and grotto decorated with a sculptural ensemble. The alleys and the vegetation near the lake and on the hill were designed in the French landscape style, in contrast with the geometry of the axis zone and the alleys on its side, with alignments of trees, pruned shrubs and flower platbands.

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