Riverbank Park

Riverbank Park Downtown Flint's Riverbank Park is a one of a kind modernist park designed by world renowned landscape architect Lawrence Halprin. The city park, which has been described by the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office as "one of the most important modernist landscapes in the state" is broken into 8 "blocks" as it stretches from the campus of the University of Michigan - Flint to Grand Traverse Street on both sides of the river.
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Each block was designed to facilitate a specific use, including a playground, promenade, the famous Grand Fountain, as well as the now defunct "Archimedes Screw." The Amphitheater block is used continuously as a venue for community and private events, including the Flint Jazz Festival, Flint's Juneteenth celebration, and the Flint Gospel Music Festival.

Operating as usual

My City Magazine
11/27/2019
My City Magazine

My City Magazine

In a follow up to a article last week, Todd’s Tavern location may have been found!

It was a great weekend to bring Flint Jazzfest back to the park.
07/29/2019

It was a great weekend to bring Flint Jazzfest back to the park.

Are you interested in sharing your thoughts on the future of Flint's Riverbank Park? Here's a way to provide some feedba...
11/01/2018
Thinking About What's Next for the Flint River Corridor

Are you interested in sharing your thoughts on the future of Flint's Riverbank Park? Here's a way to provide some feedback.
https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSe2nnFjwmkhsK5zqYCUgt83JSAEZj83sgzxLnBGlvMojeOMHA/viewform

The Flint River Corridor Alliance, a chapter of the Flint River Watershed Coalition focused on economic development, recreation, and environmental quality along the City of Flint river corridor, is participating in planning for 2019. We are seeking Flint resident and stakeholder input to guide our f...

08/11/2018
From park visitor Matthew Piper: " I don't know if, after an hour and a half introductory visit, I have any right to adv...
07/11/2018
Mid-Michigan modern

From park visitor Matthew Piper: " I don't know if, after an hour and a half introductory visit, I have any right to advocate on behalf of the preservation of Riverbank Park, but I can't help but hope that I'll get a chance to experience that vision for real one day, and that many others will too."

http://www.matthewjpiper.com/2018/05/mid-michigan-modern.html#more

We recently ventured to Midland, two hours north of Detroit, to tour the Alden B. Dow Home & Studio , and to Flint, where we visited Lawrenc...

06/23/2018
How's this for a "Throwback Thursday?"  This article covering plans for Riverbank Park was published 42 years ago today ...
06/14/2018

How's this for a "Throwback Thursday?" This article covering plans for Riverbank Park was published 42 years ago today in the Flint Journal.

Working in Halprin’s office, Satoru Nash*ta, John Cropper, and architect Steven Holl all contributed to the design of Ri...
04/24/2018
Portions of Halprin’s Riverbank Park Demolished | The Cultural Landscape Foundation

Working in Halprin’s office, Satoru Nash*ta, John Cropper, and architect Steven Holl all contributed to the design of Riverbank Park, which was the embodiment of the concept of “landscape-as-infrastructure,” its pools, canals, and water features designed to aid in flood-control measures in compliance with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The park won an Honor Award in Parks and Recreation Planning from the American Society of Landscape Architects in 1982.

https://tclf.org/portions-halprin-riverbank-park-demolished

With so many thousands of people downtown today, it would have been great to see the fountain running for the the Back t...
08/19/2017

With so many thousands of people downtown today, it would have been great to see the fountain running for the the Back to the Bricks - Car Cruise

"The great challenge for the garden designer is not to make the garden look natural, but to make the garden so that the ...
08/02/2017

"The great challenge for the garden designer is not to make the garden look natural, but to make the garden so that the people in it will feel natural" - Lawrence Halprin

08/01/2017
Curbed

"Over the decades many of the structures have fallen into neglect, but in recent years the movement has seen a revival."

Do you love or hate Brutalism? Our new explainer series, "Hands On," breaks it down.

08/01/2017

The Grand Fountain is running at a higher capacity today! Come check it out!

Photos from Riverbank Park's post
07/20/2017

Photos from Riverbank Park's post

Riverbank Park's cover photo
07/20/2017

Riverbank Park's cover photo

Could it be?! Is the city working on cleaning up/improving the Grand Fountain?
07/19/2017

Could it be?! Is the city working on cleaning up/improving the Grand Fountain?

07/17/2017

The Grand Fountain has been turned on for the day! Come check it out while you can.

The Fountain Block is alive with performers tonight!
06/08/2017

The Fountain Block is alive with performers tonight!

Tonight's open session will be at the Fountain Block section of Downtown Flints Riverbank Park. 6-9pm and free. There is free parking in the lot at the southwest corner of 1st ave. and Garland st. Bring water and good vibes! Text if you have questions: 734.218.1194

"Brutalism is about to have a breakout moment, the way midcentury modernism did after the debut of AMC’s “Mad Men.” In B...
06/07/2017
Perspective | The case for preserving — and improving — brutalist architecture

"Brutalism is about to have a breakout moment, the way midcentury modernism did after the debut of AMC’s “Mad Men.” In Britain, the style “has become very, very faddish,” he notes, with books and social media sites oohing over concrete landmarks"

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/magazine/the-case-for-preserving--and-improving--brutalist-architecture/2017/05/23/8f94d198-286a-11e7-b605-33413c691853_story.html?tid=ss_tw-bottom&utm_term=.502b7e3b3bd7

D.C. is becoming a city of sterile glass boxes. Hulking concrete never looked better.

From a 1980 article about Riverbank Park: "The park is a place where friends sit and talk, or just sit and think... Some...
05/17/2017

From a 1980 article about Riverbank Park: "The park is a place where friends sit and talk, or just sit and think... Sometimes they sit as the children ask their moms and dads about the river, dams, waterfalls, and other matters"

What do you think about when you visit Flint's Riverbank Park? Do you have questions about the river, dams, waterfalls, or other matters?

Timeline Photos
05/04/2017

Timeline Photos

Riverbank Park's cover photo
05/01/2017

Riverbank Park's cover photo

A big thanks to the volunteers who came out this weekend to do some spring cleaning during the Flint River Watershed Coa...
05/01/2017

A big thanks to the volunteers who came out this weekend to do some spring cleaning during the Flint River Watershed Coalition's annual clean-up!

Michael D Melet, Flint artist and activist, explains how San Antonio's massively successful Riverwalk served as a direct...
04/30/2017

Michael D Melet, Flint artist and activist, explains how San Antonio's massively successful Riverwalk served as a direct inspiration for Flint's Riverbank Park.

"At that time Flint had a devoted mayor, and the city put together one of the most powerful urban planning teams in the United States, the late Brian Rapp, Frank Pattituci and James Sheaffer. The board heard about The River Walk in San Antonio, TX. which began as a flood control project and the city also needed urban revitalization in its center city. We heard it was a huge success. Long story short we hired San Antonio’s River Walk architect, Lawrence Halprin, and began working with the US Army Corps of Engineers, State of Michigan and other governmental agencies to replicate what we saw in San Antonio."

"The RIverbank Park project is planned with ideas from many of your fellow citizens who shared their concepts of such a ...
04/25/2017

"The RIverbank Park project is planned with ideas from many of your fellow citizens who shared their concepts of such a park with designers who have translated these into a beautiful and useful area." - Judge Louis D. McGregor

San Francisco's United Nations Plaza, another Halprin designed space, is the subject of this 2011 episode of the popular...
04/24/2017
The Biography of 100,000 Square Feet - 99% Invisible

San Francisco's United Nations Plaza, another Halprin designed space, is the subject of this 2011 episode of the popular podcast "99 percent invisible"

"Its central feature, at the entrance of the plaza, is a unique fountain that was designed by Lawrence Halprin in 1975. It’s a design that kind of pulls you in and invites you to take the steps down to the water and climb in between the hulking stones. And that’s part of the problem."

http://99percentinvisible.org/episode/episode-39x-the-biography-of-100-000-square-feet/

In the center of San Francisco, there is a plaza with no benches. Its central feature, at the entrance of the plaza, is a unique fountain that was designed by Lawrence Halprin in 1975. The water shoots out at various angles, from inside a sunken pit, filled with large granite slabs. It’s a design th...

Riverbank park was designed from the start to be a space for community gatherings. Check our these screenshots from a ho...
04/18/2017

Riverbank park was designed from the start to be a space for community gatherings. Check our these screenshots from a home recording of 1987's Riverfest.

Watch the full video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ObtGNon04r4

"His eponymous firm became a seedbed for many talented designers now celebrated in their own right.The innovative techni...
04/17/2017
The Landscape Architecture of Lawrence Halprin at the National Building Museum

"His eponymous firm became a seedbed for many talented designers now celebrated in their own right.The innovative techniques that he pioneered changed the field of landscape architecture forever."

Yesterday saw the close of the National Building Museum's special exhibition Riverbank Park's contested designer, Lawrence Halprin. Read more about the exhibit, and Halprin here!

http://www.nbm.org/exhibition/lawrence-halprin/

Lawrence Halprin was one of the most influential landscape architects of the 20th century. This exhibition features more than 50 newly commissioned photos.

Some potentially BIG changes coming to Riverbank Park. What do you all think of this?  http://www.crainsdetroit.com/arti...
04/10/2017
Flint River Restoration Project will remove dams, boost recreation by 2018

Some potentially BIG changes coming to Riverbank Park. What do you all think of this?


http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20170409/NEWS/170409861/flint-river-restoration-project-will-remove-dams-boost-recreation-by

It's a $37 million effort to replace a crumbling, long-dangerous dam and surround it with 80 acres of parks, people-friendly access to the water and three miles of hiking and biking trails along a 1.5-mile stretch of river.

03/18/2015

A lot of people have "liked" Riverbank park over the past few days. We're so glad for the attention this gem has been getting. Do you have any questions about Flint's unique, modernist park? Send us a message, or post your thoughts on the page.

03/17/2015

Happy Saint Patrick's day, park fans! Stop by the Grand Fountain during your celebrating today.

09/20/2014

Thank you to everyone who participated in today's workshop! Several people were asking about how they can become advocates for Riverbank Park. One of the easiest and most effective ways to help the park is by simply using it, and sharing the space with others. The more people who use and appreciate the space, the easier it will be to rally for improvements!

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1 S Saginaw St
Flint, MI
48502

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Comments

I just got back from seeing the fountain running this afternoon and it was incredible! It was so lovely seeing all the people gathering around and reading under the waterfalls etc. I can't wait to see it running at full capacity--keep it up!!