John Ringling's Vision for St. Armands
John Ringling's vision for St. Armands Key was as a people-friendly place of broad boulevards, beautiful homes, classical statues, lush landscaping, elegant shops and restaurants, and a central park for musical performances. His travels to the Renaissance cities of Italy inspired his vision. The classical sculpture he saw there combined the realistic portrayal of individual beauty and the humanistic aspects of idealized beauty. Sculpture was a key component of his vision for our Key as he began marketing lots in 1927. At that point it consisted only of the streets, boulevards, landscaping, statues, seawalls, subdivision plat, one commercial building and a handful of homes. Due to the intervening Florida land crash, the Depression, and World War II; it would be 30 years before the commercial and residential districts would be largely built-out and the Key would take the form familiar to us today.
John Ringling (1866-1936):