Nashville riverfront revitalization project gets underway - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Nashville riverfront revitalization project gets underway

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

Construction has begun along the riverfront near downtown Nashville, where there will soon be more greenways and family zones near the Cumberland River.

Crews are now using machinery to grade the land, break down steep slopes and prepare for foundations and drainage work on the $65 million revitalization project.

"I think the closest city I could compare it to is Chattanooga, and I think we are going to exceed what has been done there on the riverfront," said Metro Parks Director Tommy Lynch.

The design for the riverfront project came out of ideas meshed together from riverfronts in cities like Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and San Antonio.

"Since the flood in 2010, it's sort of brought out an active aspect of the river - that Nashville is a riverfront town," Lynch said.

The next order of business will be the layout of the Metro Water Services' plan for flood walls and drainage next month.

Plans call for improvements on both sides of the river. On the east bank near LP Field, a great lawn will surround the greenway while added docks will create a spot to drop a canoe in the water.

And everyone will be able to enjoy the Cumberland from the west bank, too.

"Eventually, we will have water cannons on the west bank. And we'll have an adult playground and fitness equipment that people can access as they are running along the greenway," Lynch said.

The area between the Shelby Avenue Pedestrian Bridge and the Korean Veterans Memorial Bridge will also have a three-acre greenspace anchored with an amphitheater.

The east and the west banks will not open until everything is completed on both sides of the river, likely the summer of 2015.

"We plan by July Fourth of next year that we will have a concert in the amphitheater and the park on the west bank," Lynch said.

Plans don't stop there. It's years away, but eventually, the improvements will stretch all the way from the west bank to Fort Nashborough.

Copyright 2014 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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