The increased frequency of flood events, combined with aging park amenities, has led the City’s Parks and Recreation leaders to look at what the future landscape of Lower City Park, located at 200 E. Park Road, might include.

A few concepts have been generated by a landscape architecture firm, but the City also wants to hear what the public has to say about the future of their park:  the park elements they want maintained, the uses or amenities they’d like to see added, reactions to the initial architectural concepts, as well as brand new ideas.

The City will host an open house on Wednesday, Oct. 21 in the Social Hall of the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center, 220 S. Gilbert Street, to present and gather ideas and feedback. Confluence, a Des Moines-based landscape architecture firm that has been hired to develop a park master plan, will be available to present details of some of the concepts that have been suggested and answer questions from the public. Their presentation will be bookended by two separate open houses, to allow greater time flexibility for attendees.

The first open house is scheduled from 5 to 5:40 p.m., followed by the Confluence presentation from 5:40 to 6:20. The second open house will then run from 6:20 to 7 p.m. The open houses will allow people the time to study the presentation materials and discuss ideas with Confluence representatives and Parks and Recreation staff.

City Park has been hit heavily by floods in recent years, negatively impacting public and private events that had been scheduled, as well as the operation of three park amenities -- carnival rides, baseball diamonds, and Riverside Festival Stage performances and events -- that have been forced to shut down or relocate for long periods of time. Use of the park’s open spaces along the river, as well as access to the roadway and trail network through the park, have also been restricted by floodwaters or their aftermath.

Registration is not required for the open house, and the public is encouraged to attend. For more information, contact Geoff Fruin, Assistant City Manager, at 319-356-5010 or

Date of publication

Wednesday, October 14, 2015