Local Landslide, Clearwater Designations


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Last week, Friends for Our Riverfront was awarded the 2009 Clearwater Award from the Waterfront Center, an international non-profit that helps communities utilize waterfronts for public use.

During the same week, Overton Park was named one of The Cultural Landscape Foundation's 16 Landslide sites for 2009.

Friends for Our Riverfront is a group of boaters, historic preservationists, activists, and architects, among others, dedicated to the eco-friendly development of the Memphis Riverfront. The group wants to see development that capitalizes on Memphis' history and its relationship with the Mississippi River, and has sponsored lectures with Charleston, South Carolina, mayor Joe Riley and Conservation Fund chairman Charles Jordan.

"We all share a love for this city and its relationship with the Mississippi River, and we are grateful that our efforts have been acknowledged on an international platform by the Waterfront Center," Friends for Our Riverfront president Virginia McLean said in a released statement.

The group is currently focusing on a proposed project to restore the Cobblestone Landing.

The Cultural Landscape Foundation established its annual Landslide program to focus attention on cultural landscapes at risk for alteration or destruction. This year spotlighted places designed by seminal and regionally influential figures — Overton Park was designed as part of the parkway system by George Kessler — and says these estate gardens, plazas, and cemeteries have influenced our country's collective landscape legacy.

In choosing Overton Park as one of the designated sites, the foundation said that "the integrity of this community cornerstone and National Register property is at risk due to storm water management measures proposed by city engineers as well as ongoing expansion plans of institutions within the park, particularly those of the Memphis Zoo."

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