Riverfront Park

Mankato, MN | Sports + Recreation

Overview

On the banks of the Minnesota River, Riverfront Park is an exciting and unique space formed through ISG’s partnership with the City of Mankato, where this former industrial site was converted into a much-needed gathering space for cultural and recreational activities.


Opportunity

A former industrial site provided the perfect location for a large-scale conversion project that would result in a much-needed outdoor park and events space.

Solution

Riverfront Park, located just north of downtown Mankato, is helping to rejuvenate the Old Town District and offers a critical link to the City’s commitment to urban planning. The park provides a new venue for festivals and concerts, improves access to the popular Sakatah Bike Trail, preserves open space for the community, and allows visitors to reconnect to the Minnesota River with access for kayaking and fishing. Educational kiosks dotted along the park highlight features including an artesian well, plus it identifies the local ecology, geology, and native plants of the Minnesota River Valley.

A new 1,240 sq. ft. Riverfront Pavilion, including public restrooms, a lobby, and a sheltered picnic area is the central commons area for the park and provides a convenient and user-friendly place to gather. The Pavilion—designed to echo Mankato’s past—blends in with the nearby historic buildings.

The Vetter Stone Amphitheater, a new musical venue within Riverfront Park helps to attract cultural events and festivals for the greater Mankato area including Rib Fest, The Arts by the River Festival, and The Riverbend Blues Festival. The family of the locally owned Vetter Stone quarry donated 1,500 tons of limestone for the project. The amphitheater’s tiered stone walls offer seating for 1,000 people with space for nearly 12,000 on the surrounding lawn. The tensile fabric shelter provides a great sound reflector and lighting backdrop for the stage shows.

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