Riverview Park: The Hannibal community to help plan long-term improvements for the town’s ‘crown jewel’

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The stone wall at an overlook at Riverview Park missing bricks in several places. Megan Duncan

HANNIBAL, Mo. — For many in Hannibal, the winding roads through Riverview Park is a walk, or drive, down memory lane.

For more than a century the 465-acre park, located at 2000 Harrison Hill, has echoed the sounds of generations playing baseball in the grassy fields, wandering down the nature paths, swinging on swing sets, and posing for pictures with the Mississippi River view. 

The city of Hannibal is now turning to citizens to help plan and preserve the park for future generations. They are seeking input on a long-term master plan for improvements and upgrades to the park.  

“We would like to hear  from the Hannibal community as we work on a vision for the future of Riverview Park,” Mary Lynn Richards, recreation supervisor at Hannibal Parks and Recreation, said. 

The master plan will take about nine months to complete, and will create a playbook for the future of the park, as improvements are completed over the next one to ten years. It will also provide a map for future fundraising efforts.

Hannibal Parks and Recreation will pose a new online question every two weeks and will use the community feedback in the strategic planning process. The questions can be answered on the Hannibal Parks and Recreation Riverview Park page.

A public forum will also be held soon on a date to be announced to gather community input and ideas for Riverview Park.

Andy Dorian, central services director for the city of Hannibal, called the park Hannibal’s “crown jewel” during the Sept. 6 meeting of the Hannibal City Council.

He also reported areas of the park in need of repair due to windstorms, landslides and washouts. One section of a nature trail, the North River Road trail, is closed due to a landslide and trail collapse.

In September the City of Hannibal signed a contract with Planning Design Studio, LLC from St. Louis in the amount of $73,900 to assist with the data collection; analysis, vision and conceptual development; and a final master plan.

The master plan will also include ideas for a new park entrance, signage, overlooks, nature trails, recreation equipment and more. 

They also hope to highlight the history of the park which was established in 1909 and placed on the national registry for historic places in 2005. A landscape plan for tree management and utilization of native plantings will also be included.

Richards said the community seems ready to help plan for the future.

“We have received a really good response so far,” she said. “We are excited to continue to hear from people like us who love Riverview Park.”

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