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.