UPDATED: This release has been updated to change the ribbon-cutting event to an 11 a.m. start time.
City of Alexandria to Host Ribbon-Cutting for Interim Waterfront Park; Opening of Interactive Public Art Installation
For Immediate Release: March 12, 2019
The Alexandria City Council invites the public to a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the interim Waterfront Park on Saturday, March 30, from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., at 1 King St. The celebration will continue with festivities from 2 to 9 p.m. to mark the opening of Mirror Mirror, a new sound-responsive, interactive public art installation. Events will occur rain or shine.
"Waterfront Park is the heart of the transformation of the Potomac River shoreline in Alexandria," said Mayor Justin Wilson. "So many members of our community have worked tirelessly toward a dynamic and connected waterfront, and we are thrilled to see the next phase of this vision come to life."
The new Waterfront Park combines the original King Street Park and Waterfront Park sites with the sites of the former Old Dominion Boat Club building and parking lot to create a seamless transition between Old Town's historic retail corridor and the water. The interim park features an open plaza, a waterfront promenade, shade structures, and a modular space that can adapt to different purposes throughout the year. In several years, the interim park will close so that flood mitigation infrastructure can be constructed and additional amenities added before the permanent park reopens.
To help activate the space, the City commissioned an original work of public art. Mirror Mirror, created by SOFTlab, a New York-based design studio led by artist and architect Michael Szivos, was inspired by the historic Fresnel lens of Alexandria's Jones Point Lighthouse. The art responds to sound with illuminated color, bathing visitors in rainbow-hued light as they talk, sing, and play within the installation. The site does not make sound. The installation is the first for Site/See: New Views in Old Town, a new annual series of temporary public art installations in Waterfront Park. It will be on display from March through November 2019.
The City's Waterfront Small Area Plan, approved by City Council in 2012, is a 30-year vision to revitalize Alexandria's Waterfront through expanded access to open space and increased promotion as a local and regional arts and cultural destination. The Plan calls for a network of pedestrian and bicycle paths to provide continuous public waterfront access from Oronoco Bay Park to Jones Point Park. Waterfront Park is the keystone in this vision, establishing prime public access in the heart of the Waterfront.
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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/108596.