Riverview Park Master Plan (Courtesy Metro Louisville)
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Construction of the first phase of Riverview Park is set to begin in the Spring of 2010 in Southwestern Louisville near Pleasure Ridge Park. Mayor Abramson and Councilman Rick Blackwell made the announcement yesterday about the project that will include $1.9 million in upgrades.

Located at the corner of Greenwood Road and Cane Run Road, the 87-acre park will take several years to complete, built in phases and overseen by the Waterfront Development Corporation just like Waterfront Park. Plans for the first phase include building a new boat ramp, improving parking areas, and constructing a new play- and sprayground with $300,000 donated by Humana founder Mr. and Mrs. David A. Jones.

Riverview Park isn’t new, and in terms of landscape architecture, isn’t currently anything special. The new master plan, devised by local landscape architecture firm Carman of Clay Street will change a grassy lawn and smattering of forest into one of the best parks in the city with a final price tag estimated at $30 to $40 million.

Mayor Abramson waxes poetic about the new park:

The natural beauty of this landscape—with its dense tree canopy, the lapping water of the Ohio River and the view of lush greenery of Southern Indiana—will create a lasting legacy for generations to come… It’s another example of our plan to transform Louisville into a City of Parks.

Situated on both sides of a levee, the new Riverview Park helps to bridge what could have otherwise been a visually and physically daunting barrier. The new plan provides for a gradual earthen ramp on each side of the levee to meet with the Levee Trail, part of a planned 100-plus-mile Louisville Loop. The new splash park will be located alongside this new ramp on the Ohio River side of the levee.

Landscapes are manipulated in a similarly geometric fashion as Hargreaves Associates’ Waterfront Park, allowing for dramatic ridges and swales all generally conforming to a circular path to inform the spatial layout of the park. Several iconic spaces will surely become as familiar as the Great Lawn Downtown. Features include a terraced lawn with a set of grand stairs, several overlooks, an amphitheater, a grand promenade, and various playing fields.

Among the most interesting planned features are a series of meandering footpaths transporting the visitor through a succession of landscapes. Walking through the southern edge of the park, one will progress from the more formal promenade into a meadowland followed by a savannah intermixed with woodlands. At the end of the journey lies a grand earthen observation hill and a ramp from which the park-goer can gaze up and down the Ohio River.

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6 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks again for the article. I agree, nothing earthshattering about the design, but it is well done and thoughtful.

    All it needs is an elevated highway over the top of it and it’d be just as good as Waterfront Park

  2. I used to live blocks from this park, and i can truly say that anything other than what is currently their now would be nice, the place is a dump with Drug Using Teenagers and stray cats running about, the only real use at the moment is the boat launch which gets plenty of visitors a day. This proposal will boost property values and maybe even cause some more commercial development along the cane run rd cooridor, Most probably dont realize that you can get the best seafood in town, no more than a mile down the rd at Mike Linnigs…

  3. I agree, Josh, that any improvement to the current state will help out. The last time I visited Riverview Park was a little over a year ago and I didn’t stay very long as there was really nothing to do. It is peaceful along the Ohio River there and could stand to benefit from improved views and access. The boating and playground improvements in the first phase should really help to demonstrate what’s in store for the park.

    In terms of development around the park, I agree property values will likely increase and development could start to take off. Hopefully the area will grow into a sustainable and walkable neighborhood, perhaps with a small sort of mixed-use town center. We’ll see what happens as this one is long-term.

  4. Yeah, long term is key, we bought a house out there in 2007 and saw that they were planning these park improvements, its not 2.5 years later and they are just now discussing getting started on the first phase, It will be several years before residents of that community see what that area could become…

  5. Will, it looks like another fine mess that metro parks, Mike Hitzs and his cronies have made ,place looks bad they left a mess at riverview park and all they did was blow tax money,and smoke up our asses,the lower parking that is new for the boat trailors has been under water for at least a month and now the lod parking lot that they sprayed oil on is under water, did the PARKS or CITY OF LOUISVILLE go through the army core.To see what was needed to fix the parking lot, asphalt will will cavein after having water under it and the sand and rock washed out from under it…. They should have used cement on the new parking lot,and will now have to redo what they have paid for, DONT you think that some day they will get right, Money to burn only if The Metro Parks had to be responsibly with money they just throw away hand over fist,,,,,,, looks like the Director is padding someones pocket, Maybee his own and his Asst. Well they need more money to do less, Let’s give them a Raise in pay.their kids might need a house bought for them or a new Car or something, that is for their kids, becuse we tax payers are providing the upper manegment to have take home cars, We pay for there Fuel in these cars and they also dont pay for insurance sounds GOOD sign ME-UP

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