Changes are coming to Riverfront Park, and the City of Spokane and the Citizen Advisory Committee have been busy all year discussing ways to make it a more vibrant and accessible park. (Full disclosure: Inlander publisher Ted S. McGregor Jr. is chair of the committee.)
The first public open house to see the Riverfront Park Master Plan 2014 is this Wednesday from 4 to 5:30 pm at the Spokane Public Library. They've been soliciting general feedback since the summer, and will host additional forums. It’s the first time the city has attempted to make comprehensive renovations since Expo ’74, and they’ve got big plans.
Among the ideas the citizen committee has already suggested:
• Relocating the Ice Palace from under the Pavilion
• Removing the rides under the Pavilion, possibly moving them elsewhere
• Adding an outdoor amphitheater, possibly under Pavilion
• Re-covering the Pavilion with some sort of translucent material
• Creating a North Entry “gateway” off Washington Street
Other ideas that have been floated:
• Getting rid of the IMAX Theater
• Moving Looff Carrousel
• Moving the Bloomsday Runners sculpture
• Building a covered skatepark
• Adding a dog park
• Building a professional-level climbing gym
• Building a sports field house with hockey rink
• A big attraction, like a giant ferris wheel
• Working with private developers to build condos, retail and restaurants on the North Bank of the river
There’s not really much outlined on the site yet, so if you’re curious about the specifics you should dig into the meeting minutes and documents posted here. This summary discussion from September and this North Bank analysis from early October have the most recent details.
A model of Havermale Island and other conceptual sketches will be on display at the public forum, and parks staff and committee members will be around to answer questions. Here’s the full press release from the city: SpokaneParksRiverfrontParkForumNov6.pdf
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