RiverLoop Parks & Trails
A recipient of a 2013 Central States ASLA Merit Award, this $23 million project has dramatically changed the appearance and function of the Cedar River in downtown Waterloo and consists of three basic elements. The Cedar River Plaza and Amphitheater includes a 2400 square foot performance area with stadium seating and a 10,000 square foot elevated plaza area. The Riverwalk Loop consists of new and existing recreational trails that serve as the final link in nearly 80 miles of recreational trails through the metropolitan area, and a connection with the Cedar Valley Nature Trail and Cedar Rapids. The downtown segments of the RiverLoop include an integrated network of bike paths and pedestrian walkways, scenic overlooks with interpretive signage, and enhanced features such as decorative paving, lighting, signing, shade structures, informational kiosks, and landscaping. The Cedar River Dam and adjacent river walls were rehabilitated and new inflatable gates on the dam allow an increase of the pool elevation behind the dam by approximately four feet to enhance recreational boating opportunities.
RITLAND+KUIPER Landscape Architects assisted the Design Committee for this work throughout the preliminary master plan process. We were then hired by the project engineer, AECOM, to assist in developing the detailed design and construction documents for each of the phases of the work. Our work has included site grading coordination, site paving, retaining walls, site landscaping, site layout coordination, and detailed design elements such as site lighting, railings, signage, feature areas, overlooks, and coordination of structural elements. All of the project phases were completed in the fall of 2012.