Master Concept Plan for Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park Unveiled - A public park where the community can come together

03/18/15

Today, Mayor Bob Buckhorn and members of the design team, led by Denver-based Civitas, Inc., presented the master concept plan Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park in the West River area.

The new park design is a product of community planning sessions and conversations with more than 350 residents and area stakeholders interested in the park’s future. Together with the design team, the conceptual master plan represents their collective vision for the nearly-25 acre park.

“Riverfront Park is underutilized and undervalued given its size and potential in the heart of our urban core. We’re going to change that, and by building community and investing in this park, together, we are building new opportunities in West River area,” said Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn. “Since May, we’ve worked with the surrounding community and key stakeholders to engage, listen, and create a collaborative vision that will transform this park.”

In a series of public meetings and briefings, residents shared their desires and needs for greater safety and accessibility, public access to the Hillsborough River, fitness trails, picnic site, great lawn for activities and references to community history.

Based on that feedback, the new design creates a public space where the community can come together, that is welcome and accessible to everyone day or night, where history is celebrated, as well as a place for families to relax and have fun.

The new design features the following amenities:

  • Grading the 25 acres of park space to draw visitors and users down to the Hillsborough River improving sight lines, visibility and safety.
  • Approximately 2 acres of park space is gained by shifting Laurel St. North, allowing the existing multi-use field to become regulation size with added seating.
  • A 0.5 mile loop trail with outdoor fitness stations as well as a new, regulation-size multi-use field with seating, renovated tennis courts, new sand volleyball courts, and new basketball courts.
  • Large splash pad similar in size to Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park’s Louvre Fountain. 
  • Play area with activity areas for children of different ages.
  • Upper lawn and performance pavilion to showcase the performing arts.
  • Large great lawn for special events and festivals.
  • History walk celebrating Phillips Field, Roberts City, and the surrounding neighborhood.
  • River center and plaza, which will feature approximately 6,750 sq. feet of community space for activities and programming as well as a public boat house for canoe, kayak, paddle board, dragon boats and crew boats below with 9,500 sq. feet of boat storage and rental space. 
  • Extension of the West River trail through the park, providing a continuous path from Bayshore Boulevard through Julian B. Lane Park to Columbus Drive. 
  • Improved public access to the Hillsborough River with a fishing area, paddle learning cove created by a floating boat dock, as well as public boat docks.
  • Maintaining a portion of the existing oak allee and nearly 60% of the existing tree canopy.
  • Additional parking to meet anticipated increased user demand for the park.

Civitas will move forward on the project, creating detailed design and engineering schematics. An exact cost estimate will not be determined until the schematics are complete.

Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park was identified in the InVision Tampa Center City Plan as well as the subsequent West River Master Plan as a public space with untapped potential.

To download renderings of the park design, please visit use this dropbox link.

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