Plantations line the coast and tidal rivers in states of Georgia and South Carolina. Today many of these properties are recognized for their historic values and although the region has been impacted by development, its natural resource values have not been neglected. What is not well known is how these pieces – the plantations, the wildlife preserves, and coastal areas fit together.
Could a “back-to-the-future” approach to National Park policy aid the agency in setting goals for the 21st century? Might the 1970s, the era that brought us stagflation and disco hold some clues as to what the future might bring for conservation in the United States?
Environmental economists have traditionally focused on the management of physical park units when performing economic valuations. The value NPS creates by operating cooperative programs outside of its park boundaries (including programs aimed at education, conservation, historical preservation, and recreation) through collaboration with local partners is just as relevant albeit more difficult to define.Still, we cannot omit the value that programs provide just because it is harder to quantify.
The Riverspark State Heritage Area in New York, one of the first in the nation, was designated to interpret the themes of industry and labor. Industry was an easy theme for Riverspark because its industrial history in its cities like Troy, Cohoes and Watervliet and villages like Green Island and Waterford preserved large 19th century industrial structures like the Harmony Mills in Cohoes, the Watervliet Arsenal and the Gurley Building in Troy. In addition, industrial archeologists have done an excellent job identifying and interpreting the 19th century industrial history of the area. The challenge for Riverspark was to interpret the labor theme.
The US/ICOMOS Gap Study Report is the product of a series of consultations that took from August to December, 2015. US/ICOMOS is grateful to the hundreds of heritage professionals and experts who participated in this process. Drawing from their feedback, the Study identifies categories of U.S. cultural resources with potential universal and national significance that could both represent the breadth of U.S. heritage and also fill gaps in the World Heritage List previously identified by international experts.