Cumberland Park — 2013 Urban Open Space Award Finalist

Cumberland Park

"Cumberland Park encourages physical play and activity, incorporates the natural beauty of the riverfront, and adds to the vitality of the East Bank, which are all important to me."

Nashville Mayor
Karl Dean

About Cumberland Park

Location: Nashville, Tennessee
Owner: Metro Nashville Parks and Recreation Department
Designer: Hargreaves Associates (lead design consultant)
Size: 6.5 acres

Cumberland Park and the neighboring redeveloped Bridge Building are the first constructed phases of a master plan intended to draw residents and visitors back to the river and downtown. The design is committed both to attracting new generations to the park and to sustainability through brownfield remediation, floodplain preservation, and interpretation of cultural and natural resources.

Located on the Cumberland River’s east bank below the Shelby Street pedestrian bridge, the 6.5-acre (2.6 ha) Cumberland Park transforms land for years put to industrial and commercial use into a new family-focused adventure playground.

Cut materials generated during park construction were encapsulated in the park’s main landforms to reduce off-site disposal costs while introducing new topography. Many of the above-grade industrial structures were retained and restored as interpretive elements, protecting unique cultural and historic features.

The park is sensitive to the site’s relationship to the river and the impact of the 2010 floods that ravaged the Nashville area. The design team worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to ensure that creation of the park would preserve floodplain function without increasing flood elevations or decreasing floodwater storage.

Cumberland Park is the flagship of the New Riverfront Revitalization Plan, which was endorsed by community members to provide greater accessibility and more recreational opportunities.

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