Riverfront Park Improvements

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New restrooms and excavation work for a new amphitheater with a covered stage are planned at Riverfront Park during the 2020 construction season.

Construction is scheduled to move forward this spring and summer on several improvements to Salem's Riverfront Park. Workers will follow COVID-19 precautions, as prescribed.

In 2018, the City of Salem developed a new Salem Riverfront Park  Master Plan that provides for the addition of new amenities to the 26-acre downtown park described by residents as "Salem's Living Room." The plan guides management and development of the urban park for the next 20 years. With its wide paths, open lawns, and views of the river, Riverfront Park provides ample passive recreation opportunities.

Construction of Phase 1 amenities begins this spring and summer and will continue through the coming year:

Gerry Frank | Rotary Amphitheater

The new Gerry Frank | Rotary Stage and Amphitheater is planned for construction in partnership with the Rotary Club of Salem on 3.8 acres of park property acquired from Boise Cascade at the southeast end of Riverfront Park. The Club is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2020 and committed to building a covered and enhanced performance stage at Riverfront Park in support of that milestone.

The new performance area will feature a a sweeping wood structure using a "basket weave" concept developed by CB|Two Architects, inspired by the open-weave baskets of the Kalapuya Native American tribe.   

Timeline:

  • July to late October: Site preparation, including a grassy seating area for the amphitheater, addition of 55 parking spaces in the south lot, and new entry plaza with bike racks, benches and space for food carts, all constructed by the City of Salem

  • November to 2021: Amphitheater construction by Rotary Club of Salem

​North meadow restroom

A new 8-unit restroom facility will be constructed near the North meadow and existing Rotary Pavillion, across Front Street from Court Street. An Oregon Parks and Recreation Department Local Government Grant is helping to fund the project. Construction is planned between late May and October.

Early construction work will involve moving existing plumbing and electrical service to the splash fountain so that the restroom project won't inhibit the opening of the fountain.

Architectural drawing of the new restroom and a map showing its location in the park near the pavillion on the north end.

A new restroom will be constructed this year near the North meadow.

​Park visitor impacts

Overall impacts at Riverfront Park will last about one year, but efforts will be made to limit those impacts whenever possible. For example, visitors can expect that the south parking lot near the carousel will be closed Monday through Thursday for construction activity, but open Fridays through Sundays to accommodate any scheduled events and regular weekend activities. The north parking lot will remain open and accessible through the week and weekend. Construction access to the restroom site will be past Gilbert House. Every effort will be made to work around scheduled events, whenever possible.

Contact us

Aaron KimseyEngineer
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