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Grant to fund design competition for improvements to Detroit's West Riverfront Park

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DETROIT – A grant will be used by the Detroit RiverFront Conservancy to fund a design competition for improvements to the West Riverfront Park.

The $345,000 grant from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation will provide funds to design firms that will propose ideas to transform the park.

Read more: New beach, greenways planned for Detroit Riverfront area

"It will allow us to reach out to some of the world's most talented designers and work with them to create an iconic new destination in Detroit," said Matt Cullen, chair of the Detroit RiverFront Conservancy board of directors.

Qualification requests have been sent to more than 80 design firms worldwide, including several Metro Detroit firms. A panel of representatives from the Conservancy, the City of Detroit and local and national architectural design and planning experts will review the submissions and narrow them down to eight teams.

Those eight teams will go to public interviews, and five teams will advance and receive a $30,000 stipend to develop and complete design concepts.

A public exhibition will be held in November to share the concepts. The conservancy will then engage the top two teams, and the winning concept will be announced in late November.

“This project has the potential to improve the quality of life for residents, inspire further investment and help tie communities together, providing access for Southeast Michigan to more green space and recreation,” said David Egner, president and CEO of the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation.

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