View of Gateway Park and Fountain in Minneapolis, Minnesota Print

View of Gateway Park and Fountain in Minneapolis, Minnesota Print

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Gateway Park opened in 1915. This “Gateway” referred to the park’s prime location next to the railroad station. When passengers got of the train, the park was the first thing to be seen, effectively serving as the gateway to Minneapolis. The “Gateway” stamp has remained on the area ever since. The park sported a neoclassical pavilion influenced by the Beaux-Arts style of architecture. Larry Millet, author of several books on Twin Cities architecture, describes the Gateway Pavilion in his book, Lost Twin Cities:

“The pavilion, faced in smooth stone, consisted of a one-and-a-half-story central section flanked by low, curving, colonnades that extended outward in a welcoming gesture. The central part of the pavilion was quite ornate, with large Palladian windows and entry arches, carved panels, and a balustrade around a low domed roof. The colonnades to either side were treated more simply, employing the modest Tuscan order and a minimum of decoration.”

The pavilion had public restrooms, and space used by the Minneapolis Tourist Bureau. Carved on the front of the pavilion was “The Gateway: More than her gates the city opens her heart to you.” The unveiling of the Gateway Park and Pavilion represented the effective end to the area known as Bridge Square. From then on, it would be referred to as The Gateway.

Gateway Park was closed and leveled as part of the Gateway Renewal Project in the 1950s. The fountain survived the demolition of the Gateway and now lives in the Lake Harriet Rose Garden, where it now serves as a backdrop for many wedding photos.

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