Project Description

Merit Award

Truman: A Walk with HarryIndependence, Missouri

SWA Group

Lead Landscape Architect:åÊRene Bihan

Client: Gallagher & Associates

Harry S. Truman, the 33rd President of the United States, was an avid walker throughout his life. He maintained his daily walking regime during his presidency and into his later years after he returned to his hometown of Independence, Missouri. He used walking as a way to commence his day, ruminate on decisions, stay healthy, and appreciate the landscape.

By reimagining the grounds of the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum with a walking loop, series of memorials, and an enhanced ecological experience, visitors are encouraged to "Walk with Harry" and understand Truman's life and an extraordinary period of American history through the lens of landscape. The walk is measured out at Truman's pace, 30 inches a stride and 128 steps per minute. This redesign will transform the grounds, currently an underutilized ornamental monoculture, into an important national resource that brings history, the Missouri landscape, and civic engagement into focus. The transformation allows the visitor to walk alongside Truman, and appreciate history out in the open, in a direct and participatory manner.