Located along the South Branch of the Chicago River, Southbank Park is a 2-acre publicly accessible park and riverwalk, developed and built by Lendlease. The park anchors the firms new 7-acre Southbank neighborhood in the South Loop that, upon completion, will include several mixed-use towers, the first of which, The Cooper at Southbank, opened in 2018.
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Project at a glance
Designed by Hoerr Schaudt Landscape Architecture, whose plan was implemented by Wolff Landscape Architecture (now Confluence), Southbank Park features landscaping and walkways that lead down to a fully accessible riverwalk showcasing an amphitheater created from lannon stone uncovered during excavation and originally the foundation of Chicagos Grand Central Station, which operated on the site until 1969. Other amenities include bicycle racks, a central lawn and a viewing platform showcasing the river and city skyline. A kayak launch will open opposite the amphitheater and a water taxi stop is planned.
At the heart of the myriad public benefits Southbank Park brings to Chicago is the reactivation of riverfront land that had been vacant since the 1970s, and the reestablishment of connectivity to the river. Lendlease now maintains the park as green space for residents and the public, while providing critical infrastructure for expansion of the Chicago Riverwalk.