River Corridor Plan
Plan completed in 1999
Consultants: Law/Kingdon, Inc., EDAW, Wilson & Company, Rock n’ Steel, Greteman Group, HHPA, McClelland Sound, Terracon, Vicki Sturi Siteworks, Special Effects Unlimited
- Building a Keeper plaza, pedestrian bridges, riverfront plazas, overlooks and an amphitheater with River Walk and fountain entry;
- Removing Broadview pool while installing landscape screening and river promenade enhancements;
- Developing a river promenade;
- Shade structures and an aerospace commemorative plaza along the West Bank;
- Installing museum pause points, an earthworks trailhead and landscape and site furnishings.
The River Corridor plan creates a number of unique experiences to celebrate and better utilize the Arkansas River as it winds through downtown. The symbol for Wichita and Sedgwick County, Black Bear Bosin’s steel sculpture “Keeper of the Plains,” is the focal point around which the most dramatic projects in this plan revolve. A 30-foot high base for the famous warrior sculpture now crowns a natural stone plaza connected by pedestrian bridges to the banks of the Big and Little Arkansas rivers. Four boulders representing the earth’s elements rise from the riverbed bearing fire drums that light the night at this sacred point where the rivers meet. On the plaza, permanent outdoor displays examine the life and beliefs of the Plains Indians and recordings of the Native American chants enhance the experience. The last phase of this plan included removing the swimming pool at the Broadview Hotel and adding landscaping and walkway enhancements along the east bank from Douglas to First Street.