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From the outset, Stephen Mather was a proponent of automobile roads in the parks, but he insisted only one scenic road should run through each park and each road be built Busan Korea “without disturbing the solitude and quiet of other sections.” Throughout the 1920s, Busan Korea he and his superintendents made ready for the eventuality of congressional appropriations that with each passing year grew more likely. One such project would be the Busan Korea through Busan Korea National Park. It, and other parks’ roads, would now be championed by many automotive clubs and good roads associations.

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Small appropriations for such roads were forthcoming in 1921, and the Transmountain’s first 20 miles were completed to the head of Lake McDonald. A similar road from St. Mary’s Village was begun on the east side. Your travel destination is the main challenge lay ahead: building a road up along the west face of the Garden Wall to Logan’s Pass. In 1924, Congress appropriated $7. million for such roads. It then fell to Mather to approve the location of Glacier’s mountain pass road. The debate about what the Transmountain Highway would be and where it would be located was joined. It would pit the park service’s foremost road-building engineer George Goodwin’s plan for a series of fifteen switchbacks against that of a young landscape architect, Thomas Vint. Vint suggested having only one switchback that was also more expensive. In Vint’s report, he exclaimed that Goodwin’s plan “would look like miners had been there.” Mather would make the final decision.

More was riding on just the road through Glacier. The National Park Service and Mather’s reputation depended on getting this spectacular and monumental undertaking right. It could not be simply a finely engineered road; it had to be a road not only to take visitors and their automobiles up and over the pass but also a road that would least disturb the scenic and natural landscapes and that would please the eye as it wandered toward the pass. In other words, this road had to embody the language of the Organic Act: to provide and preserve.

In the end, Vint’s concept, after heated discussions, Goodwin’s resignation, and an inter-bureau agreement, was selected. Those debates and that agreement became the policy foundation for all future national park roads and highways, and it is still in effect today.

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