Today, Chicago and New York-based Studio Gang revealed designs for the Memphis Riverfront Concept, an overhaul of six miles of waterfront along the Mississippi River. The firm proposes splitting the area into five zones and developing them in short-, medium-, and long-term investments, as resources become available.

Studio Gang’s design, which was commissioned by the Riverfront Development Corporation, with support from the Hyde Family and Kresge Foundations, is based on surveys with 4,500 respondents, interviews with stakeholders of Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland’s riverfront task force, and studies of previous projects on the riverfront. The firm articulated three principles that also guided the design of their plan: fostering pride about the Mississippi, restoring the ecology of and human interaction with the river, and connecting disparate areas of the city with each other and with the river itself.

Renderings released today depict tree-lined elevated walkways, pavilions, wooden seating areas, and even small ponds where children can discover the diverse ecology of the river.  

Studio Gang recently completed a series of dome-shaped structures at the National Building Museum, and has also worked for Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo and a wave-like skyscraper known as Aqua. The Mayor’s task force plans to assess their designs and select the ideas that best fit the city’s funding and goals.