Studio Gang Releases Concept for Memphis Riverfront

July 18, 2017

“Architecture and urban design firm Studio Gang presented its concept for the future of Memphis’ riverfront today. Shaped by more than 4,500 survey responses from Memphians and multiple public events, the concept offers transformational ideas for six miles and five distinct zones of this historic and culturally significant part of the city.

Studio Gang’s concept presents short-, medium-, and long-term investment ideas grouped around three principles:

Foster positive encounters, civic pride and identity, and new understanding of the Mississippi River;

Restore natural conditions, native ecology, and a more dynamic relationship between people and the river; and

Connect assets along the river, the riverfront to the city (downtown and the neighborhoods beyond), and people with each other.

‘The concept offers a series of actionable ideas meant to help the Riverfront achieve its potential as a shared, connected civic space for all Memphians to enjoy,’ said Gia Biagi, principal of urbanism and civic impact at Studio Gang.

Studio Gang based its concept on multiple site visits, a wide range of interviews and meetings with stakeholders, surveys with some 4,500 respondents, and a study of previous planning exercises for the riverfront.

Studio Gang’s work in Memphis was commissioned for the Mayor’s Riverfront Task Force by the Riverfront Development Corp., with the generous support of the Hyde Family Foundation and the Kresge Foundation. Mayor Jim Strickland and Mayor’s Riverfront Task Force members will now evaluate the concept, seek additional public consultation, and determine which ideas are best for Memphis and feasible to execute.

‘We asked Studio Gang to think big about the future of our riverfront, and this concept proves they did exactly that. This visionary work will be the starting point of a community conversation to create a plan,’ Mayor Strickland said.

‘The riverfront is a great opportunity for a transformational public-private partnership between business, government and philanthropy—much like the one that created Shelby Farms Park. With that kind of partnership, we’ll continue to uphold my commitment to not using city general fund dollars that we prioritize for public safety and strong neighborhoods. I’m thankful that RDC, the Hyde Family Foundation and the Kresge Foundation have already stepped up,’ he said.”

Learn more about the project and download the concept book.