Find the River

Respond loudly and quickly if you agree that the final concept design for EWEB’s Riverfront Park is ugly and unnatural.

No offense to anyone involved, especially the designers who were given input to work from; as an artist, I sometimes try to put together ideas that were being expressed and have to scrap the results and start over. That’s what I see when I look at the pictures of the future park.

“Fundamentally urban” is an appropriate description and fundamentally urban is not fundamentally pretty. “Connecting the city with the river” is an action done by individuals who want to be connected to the river — in and with its beauty — who have legal access. What I see detracts greatly from the setting.

If a river were merely the water, then yes, you might say the plan succeeds in the aforementioned goal. But a river is the water and the environment it nurtures, supports and needs to thrive.

Our human nature sees that as alive and beautiful.

I have been to Chicago, and there you see the absolute worst case of connecting a city to a river. Perhaps instead the goal really is to have the river be as disconnected as possible from the city, and instead put in place safeguards for a healthy level of access to the river for perpetuity, with some lovely modest spaces for comfort or viewing.

I hope, folks of Eugene, you make your interests known if you agree.

Kevin Jones