$100M to transform 'the south coast of Ohio'

The Cincinnati Park Board announces  it will break ground on the city’s signature park on September 29, 2008. The first phase of the $100 million Central Riverfront Park, which begins east of the Roebling Suspension Bridge, will include a grand stairway lined with water-filled basins, a plaza of water jets and water curtains, as well as a yet-to-be-named restaurant.

"It's the front yard for downtown, and the region," says Steven Schuckman, superintendent of planning and design for the Cincinnati Parks Department.  "I've always considered it 'the south coast of Ohio'.

Schuckman says that the parks, and the connection between Cincinnati, Covington and Newport with their built-in daytime populations, residents, and convention-goers are unmatched in most cities.

"Essentially this will extend the wonderful ribbon of green we have along the river," he says.  "We'll have three and a half miles of continuous free public access to the water."

Next year, work will begin on a 14-acre great lawn and an event stage for concerts and other events.

"This could be a space for some of our festivals that have outgrown downtown," Schuckman says.  "For example, Oktoberfest could happen down there during the week, like in Munich.  The City wouldn't have to close off any streets."

He says that each park in the City's system has its own unique signature, and Central Riverfront Park will be no exception.

"There are features, like the waterfall, that we were able to design into the park that are different from any of the other parks," Schuckman says.

Construction on the first phase should last two to three years.

Writer: Kevin LeMaster
Source: Steven Schuckman, superintendent of planning and design, Cincinnati Parks Department
Rendering provided by Cincinnati Parks Department
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