Annual Meetings

Annual meetings provide the primary opportunity for Alliance members to gather and exchange information and views with professional colleagues and friends in a casual atmosphere. The annual meetings are informal, with a themed program that spotlights the host community’s environment through tours and presentations by participants and invited speakers. The Alliance holds its meetings in diverse historic places to explore and understand topical issues. The Alliance continues to seek out places that will offer a stimulating experience for participants.

41 st Annual Meeting – Detroit, Michigan – May 22 – 25, 2019.

Detroit as a Cultural Landscape Palimpsest


The Alliance for Historic Landscape Preservation (AHLP) is pleased to announce its 2019 annual meeting to be held in Detroit, Michigan. The Program Committee is pleased to have received many proposals for papers and summaries of works in progress that will promote lively and thoughtful discussions regarding conservation and preservation of cultural landscapes.


Throughout the conference, we will learn about the role and significance of Native American and Indigenous Peoples and their habitation and use of the land. We will also hear about:

  • expressions of urbanized ethnicities;
  • contested, political and militarized landscapes;
  • the lasting legacy of sites of industrial production; and,
  • issues of urban renewal, urban redesign, innovation and resilience.

These themes will be reinforced by organized visits to locations, amongst others, including:

  • the River Raisin National Battlefield Park, site of a significant military action during the war of 1812;
  • Lafayette Park, home to the largest collection of residences designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe;
  • Belle Isle Park, influenced by Frederick Law Olmsted as an urban oasis in Detroit;
  • Current work being done in Detroit to plan for future resiliency while protecting cultural connections to place.

Registration for the Detroit Conference is closed.

Wednesday, 22 May 2019 Thursday, 23 May 2019
10:00 am – 4:00 pm Committee Meetings

Board of Director’s Lunch and Meeting

Strategic Planning Workshop
Fisher Building – Christman War Room

Breakfast for registered guests
Inn on Ferry Street

8:00 – 9:00 amConference Registration
McGregor Conference Center   8:30 amWelcome & Announcements5:00 – 9:00 pmWelcome Reception and Conference Registration
Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History 8:45 – 11:15 amExpert Speakers
Intro: Detroit History and Context + Presentations, Posters, and Discussion
McGregor Conference Center AfternoonBus to Field Session
River Raisin Battle & Aftermath
(Lunch Provided) EveningDinner on Own
In Detroit Friday, 24 May 2019 Saturday, 25 May 2019 Breakfast for registered guests
Inn on Ferry Street  Breakfast for registered guests
Inn on Ferry Street8:00 – 9:00 amConference Registration
McGregor Conference Center 8:00 – 9:00 amConference Registration, Poster Viewing, & Silent Auction bids
McGregor Conference Center8:30 am – 12:00 pmExpert Speakers:
Introduction to Detroit Historic Designed Landscapes and Urban Renewal.
+ Presentations, Posters, and Discussion
McGregor Conference Center 8:30 – 11:45 amExpert Speakers:
Introduction to Evolving Detroit Cultural Landscapes.
+ Presentations, Posters, and Discussion
McGregor Conference CenterAfternoonBus Tour of Detroit Landscapes:
Woodward Plan, Belle Isle, Lafayette Park, Motown Museum Neighborhood
(Lunch Provided) AfternoonBus tour of Detroit’s ‘Evolving’ cultural landscapes
(Lunch Provided)EveningDinner on Own
In Detroit EveningBanquet, Silent Auction and Feather Bowling!Optional Added Site Tour:

Sunday, 26 May 2019
A special tour of the house and landscape at Fair Lane, Clara and Henry Ford’s estate with Karen Marzonie, Director of Landscapes at the estate,


The Inn on Ferry Street
A limited number of rooms is being held for AHLP delegates at The Inn on Ferry Street (84 East Ferry Street, Detroit). The Inn provides a generous buffet breakfast and is but a short walking distance from the McGregor Memorial Conference Center where we will meet each morning.
The Inn is a unique collection of Victorian mansions and carriage houses that have been adapted to serve as lodging. As a result, rates vary as several of the “rooms” are actually multiple private rooms en suite with shared bathrooms. Significant savings may be achieved by sharing these larger accommodations. Mention the “AHLP Meeting” for the special meeting rates. Note that the hotel can only hold this block until Wednesday, 3 April 2019. The Inn may be reached at: (313) 871-6000 or on line at

Alternative Accommodations
For those preferring a more traditional hotel accommodation, there are many options in the downtown area. A few suggestions to consider are:

  • Hotel St. Regis Detroit is located less than a mile from the McGregor Conference Center at 3071 W Grand Boulevard (near QLINE stop). The hotel can be reached at (313) 873-3000 or on line at Note that the hotel is undergoing major renovations. Ask staff to provide details related to how this may affect your stay.
  • Aloft Detroit at the David Whitney at 1 Park Avenue, is near Grand Circus Park downtown and near a QLINE stop.
  • The Greektown Casino Hotel is in Greektown and an inexpensive option for lodging, but a bit further from our conference venue.
  • There are also a wide range of bed and breakfast accommodations near the McGregor Conference Center, and traditional hotels in the downtown area.


The Inn on Ferry Street is less than 30 minutes from DTW (the airport!).

Once in Detroit, the QLINE provides easy public transportation along Woodward Avenue.

Things to See and Do?

Visit Detroit!
Detroit: it’s go time.

Detroit SkylineDetroit Skyline


The theme of the conference is “Detroit as a Cultural Landscape Palimpsest.” We will immerse ourselves in layers of history revealed through the cultural landscapes of the city. We will also look to the future to understand how the city is addressing dramatic demographic and economic change through innovative approaches that ensure a resilient future while embracing and preserving cultural heritage.


Our three-day conference will introduce us to the land of the Anishinabeg (First People) from a historical perspective and through the voices of Indigenous communities living in the area today. The landscape’s abundant natural resources and strategic location proved vital to the eighteenth century fur trade economy and to subsequent European settlement. Fort Detroit became a contested territory between French, British and American armies and their Indigenous allies. Vestiges of war, removal, settlement, and development remain in the landscape.


The Wyandotte Nation in Michigan The Wyandotte Nation in Michigan


See the Call for Papers and Posters and Student Scholarship links for more information.


The Woodward Plan The Woodward Plan


As Detroit grew into a commercial and manufacturing center during the 1800s, the city’s landscapes developed according to the Woodward Plan, a unified system of diagonal streets and grand public circles laid out in a symmetrical pattern. It remains the organizational system of the city today. Populated with architecture recognized as being among the finest in the U.S., the city has one of the largest surviving collections of late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century buildings in the country. We will explore the city’s landscapes and buildings and their connections to the automobile industry, music culture, urban renewal, civil rights movement, and other major themes that continue to resonate in the pulse of the city today.


Olmsted's Belle Isle Park Olmsted’s Belle Isle Park


Lafayette Park NHL Lafayette Park NHL


We will be conveniently based in Midtown at the campus of Wayne State University. Our meetings will be held in the beautiful, Minoru Yamasaki designed, McGregor Conference Center in the heart of that campus.


McGregor Conference Centre McGregor Conference Centre


We will stay a short walking distance down the street at the Inn on Ferry Street, a collection of Victorian mansions and carriage houses that have been adapted to serve as lodging.