Monday, September 21, 2009

Fund established for riverfront park, public artists named

Cincinnati City Council has unanimously approved an emergency ordinance establishing a fund to create a future revenue stream for Cincinnati Riverfront Park.

Specifically, the new fund allows the Cincinnati Park Board to accept and to appropriate donations, program funds, event funds, lease revenues and common area maintenance income, which could then be used for operations and maintenance, programs and events, and capital replacements.
The ordinance also allows for the balance within the endowment to generate interest income.

Groundbreaking the first phase of the 45-acre park was held last September. That phase is expected to include a grand fountain and pools, a glass floor promenade with balconies, a new restaurant, shade trellises and play areas, a visitor's center and a public bike center.

Artists named for park monument

The Cincinnati Park Board has also named a team of artists to design a monument honoring the Black Brigade of Cincinnati, the first piece of public art to be commissioned for Cincinnati Riverfront Park.

Sculptors John Hebenstreit and Carolyn Manto, writer Tyrone Williams, and graphic designer Erik Brown were selected from more than 40 artists through a request for qualifications (RFQ) process to design the monument, which will be installed south of the new Mehring Way in the park's East Tree Grove over the next 15 months. Park designer Sasaki Associates, Inc. is working with the artist team on an overall site and landscaping plan.

Consisting of bronze statues and plaques, interpretive signs, and carved stones, the installation will include the names of all 700 members of the Black Brigade, a group of African-American volunteers who, in 1862, erected barricades in Northern Kentucky to help protect Cincinnati during the Civil War.

"This monument will provide a moving tribute to all those who advocated for social justice, freedom and equality in a time of war and upheaval," said Willie Carden, director of Cincinnati Parks. "It is fitting that this monument will be consecrated on the shores of the Ohio River where this historic struggle unfolded, and where the fight for human dignity ultimately prevailed."

Previous reading on BC:
Cincinnati to enter agreement with Army Corps on riverfront park (7/1/09)
$2.97M Cincinnati Riverfront Park grant application approved (6/22/09)
Ohio grant could aid first phase of Cincinnati Riverfront Park (6/15/09)