By Joe Bachman
The city moved a step closer tonight in the selection of a final design for the riverbank project.
Officials recommended that a special finance and property meeting be held next week to ultimately decide what consulting firm will design the riverbank project. The two firms that seem most likely to fit the bill is Ayres Associates out of Madison, Wis. and Baraboo firm MSA Professional Services, who teamed up with Supermass Studios out of New York.
Phase one of the project will see the construction of a trail from the East River Conservancy to the Riverview Expressway, as well as improvements to Demitz Park. The East Riverbank Park will construct fishing jetties, a kayak launch, fishing piers, ramps and walkways, as well as a picnic area. A DNR grant has been awarded to the city to cover approximately half the cost of the $1.6 million dollar project.
Phase two will see improvements to Mead Rapids View Park including new railing, restoration to the river wall, and other aesthetic features. Phase three will see improvements to Veterans Memorial Park which will include an event terrace, furnishings, a new balcony, and other features.
Once a final design is decided upon, construction is expected to start and complete in 2017 for the first phase, with the second and third phases of construction completing in 2018 and 2019, respectively.
“The proposals are really for bringing the project to final design,” said City Engineer Joe Eichsteadt. “For each of these phases we’ve requested that the proposals be the final design for all three phases for continuity and efficiency of design.”
The date for this meeting is tentative, but is expected to be scheduled soon.