Mayor Unveils Final Design for West Riverfront Park
May 19, 2014
Construction Expected to Wrap up in Summer, 2015
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mayor Karl Dean today unveiled the final design and new renderings of phase one of the West Riverfront Park, an 11-acre civic park on the site of the former Thermal Transfer Plant. The park will include over one mile of multi-use greenway trails, Nashville’s first downtown dog park, ornamental gardens, a 1.5-acre event lawn called the Green and an amphitheater. Construction on the park began earlier this year.
“This site is the last great vestige of open space in downtown Nashville, and I can’t think of a better use for such beautiful green space than a world-class park, coupled with a spectacular performance venue to showcase all that Music City has to offer,” Mayor Dean said. “This iconic park will quickly become a destination for active recreation and enjoyment for residents who live in all parts of Davidson County, as well as visitors to our city.”
The park is scheduled for completion in summer, 2015. Current construction work includes grading, utility and foundation work. The project will include a minimum of 20 percent participation by small, women-owned, minority, and service-disabled veteran businesses.
The design of the park was inspired by the limestone bluffs and edges of the Cumberland River, along which it sits. Portions of the park are perched above the Cumberland River and provide a spectacular view of river activity and the rolling hills of the landscape beyond.
The park provides a critical link to Nashville’s greenway system, connecting two existing greenways through downtown – the Rolling Mill Hill greenway to the south and the MetroCenter Levee greenway to the north – creating a continuous paved trail more than 5.5 miles in length. It also provides an easy connection for the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge to East Nashville.
The amphitheater site within the park will be fully-accessible to the public during non-event days and may be fenced and gated during events and pre-event setup. The amphitheater will accommodate up to 6,500 people with semi-fixed seating for 2,200, a 300-person greenway pavilion, and 4,000 lawn seats -- all within a natural bowl providing optimal lines of sight to the stage and downtown.
The amphitheater bowl is supported by multiple buildings for restrooms, concessions, first aid and sound control for events. The facility is being built to Silver LEED certification. Sustainable features include geothermal heating and cooling, green roofs, solar power and rainwater collection.
The amphitheater facility itself is approximately 35,000 square feet on two floors and includes a 100-foot by 60-foot stage with a 40-foot vertical opening that is designed to accommodate multiple forms of performance events and musical genres, including country, rock and symphonies, as well as community events. The facility is fully supported with an artist wing, operator offices, and dining and event space which open to a park-side terrace.
The amphitheater walls are designed to appear like natural stone rising out of the landscape, similar to the limestone cliffs along the Cumberland River. The stone bases are augmented with steel panels and a flat roof with natural finishes.
Extensive engineering and design studies for a comprehensive downtown flood mitigation plan also are well-underway. The entire phase one park site sits outside of the 100-year flood plain but is designed to incorporate flood protection for 500-year flood events through an integrated flood wall design which manifests as low stone seat walls in portions of the park.
This first phase of the West Riverfront Park redevelopment is part of a larger master plan that transforms 18 acres along the west side of the Cumberland River from Church Street to Korean Veterans Boulevard into a downtown park.
The Metro Council previously approved approximately $35 million in three prior capital spending plans for riverfront redevelopment on the west bank.
The team overseeing the project includes:
- Project and Development Management: Commonwealth Development Group/Pillars Development, LLC
- Design: Hawkins Partners, Inc., Smith Gee Studio, and an internationally renowned team of performance design professionals including Hodgetts+Fung, Jaffe Holden and Schuler Shook, among others.
Construction Management: SKANSKA/SRS