Rundel Terrace Revitalization Project
Groundbreaking March 2020! (left); architect’s planning rendition (right)
About the Project
The Downtown Central Library’s Rundel Terrace Revitalization Project will transform a long-closed area into a new park-like public riverfront terrace, designed with spaces, pathways and seating for engagement, education and reflection.
Imagine a band playing downtown on a stage jutting out over the Genesee River … a group of high-schoolers preparing a National History Day presentation on how slaves used the river to escape to freedom … children seeing the power of water as energy for grinding wheat into flour … or tourists relaxing in an attractive public space downtown, while listening to unique oral histories beamed to their smartphones from the Central Library steps away.
As one of the first sites developed for ROC the Riverway, the city and state have committed nearly $7-million for repairs and maintenance underneath the terrace, and to commission a large scale site-specific public artwork for the corner of Broad Street and South Avenue.
In addition to grants secured for the project, your donations helped us raise $8,200 through an online fundraising campaign, which was matched with a $4,000 grant from USA TODAY NETWORK’s A Community Thrives initiative! (A Community Thrives, which is part of the Gannett Foundation, supports non-profit organizations like ours with projects focused on community building).
The RPL released a Call for Artists/Request for Qualifications in summer 2018. A public art selection committee comprised of Library, City and community arts volunteers managed the process and ultimately recommended Chevo Studios from Commerce City, Colorado. Chevo Studios was selected in part due to their desire to narrate Rochester’s story through their work.
Based on public and stakeholder input gathered from fall 2018 through spring 2019, emerging themes to guide Chevo Studios work included the impact of water (river, canal) at the site, Rochester’s rich history of social and political progressiveness, and industrial innovation’s transformative impact on the region.