Portland’s Mt. Tabor named first Urban Quiet Park in U.S.

Portland's Mt. Tabor Park is the first park in the United States to receive a very special designation.
Published: May. 23, 2023 at 10:26 AM PDT
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PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - Portland’s Mt. Tabor Park is the first park in the United States to receive a very special designation.

Quiet Parks International is dedicated to preserving places that offer people some real peace and quiet. Now, Mt. Tabor has been recognized as the first Urban Quiet Park in the U.S. and just the ninth in the world.

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A number of different parks throughout the U.S. have been nominated for the award. Volunteers from Quiet Parks International visit those parks in person to measure noise levels, and then if the park meets certain criteria there it can be considered for the award.

Mt. Tabor Park was founded in 1909 and spans over 176 acres. It has 53 species of trees and 143 species of birds.

FOX 12 spoke with Jacob Schmidt, who measured the noise levels at Mt. Tabor. We asked him what makes the park so special compared to others around the country.

“I think it’s Tabor’s proximity to downtown and the hustle and bustle of Portland while also having enough geologic features in the park,” he said. “It’s a busy park, there’s a lot of community going on in it, but there’s a lot of nooks and crannies where people can find their own quiet spaces.”

Quiet Parks International estimates that 97% of the U.S. population is exposed to noise from highways and airplanes, and noise pollution can add to anxiety, stress and other problems. That’s one reason why they say it’s so important to protect those places where people can get some peace and quiet.

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Quiet Parks International will present the award to Portland Parks & Recreation at a ceremony on Friday, May 26, at 9 a.m. near the visitor center at Mt. Tabor Park.