The city of Portland is working on the design of three downtown parks recently approved by the City Council.
South Park Block 5, O'Bryant Square and Ankeny Park are part of the city's "Three Downtown Parks Project."
Located west of the Fox Tower between Southwest Ninth and Park avenues and Southwest Taylor and Yamhill streets, South Park Block 5 served as a surface parking lot for many years. Tom Moyer, of TMT Development Co., bought it in 1997, intending to develop a below-ground parking garage and donate the surface area to the city for development as a public park. He recently followed through on his intention and gave an additional $1 million toward the design and construction of a new public plaza on the site.
The two other park blocks stretch along Southwest Park Avenue between Southwest Taylor and West Burnside streets.
ZGF Partnership will design the three parks — a $2 million park on South Park Block 5; a $1.7 million renovation of O'Bryant Square, four blocks to the north; and an unbudgeted renovation of Ankeny Park, between Burnside and Southwest Ankeny streets. ZGF Partnership includes landscape architect Laurie Olin of Mayer/Reed working with artist and designer Tad Savinar and architect Robert Thompson of TVA Architect.
Additional funding for the Three Downtown Parks is provided by the Portland Development Commission's South Park Blocks Urban Renewal Area and the 2002 Parks Levy.
It is expected that a Citizens Advisory Committee will begin meeting this summer and public meetings and events will follow.
To learn more about the Three Downtown Parks Project, visit www.portlandparks.org or call Portland Parks and Recreation, 503-823-5588.