The transformation of the most visible real estate in Memphis – Tom Lee Park – is well underway. What was a flat and largely featureless 31 acres of open space is becoming a stunning, natural, inviting place for all of Memphis and Shelby County with Tom Lee’s legacy of kindness, generosity, and empathy at the forefront.
Connected seamlessly to downtown, Tom Lee Park will be a great place to get – and stay – active with new amenities and park experiences throughout. Alongside long-requested park features like restrooms, concessions, water fountains, and trees for shade, active features built into the park include:
- The Civic Canopy – a 20,000 sq. ft. “floating” roof above multi-use sports and activity courts that can host classes, games, tournaments, concerts, and more.
- River Fit – a dedicated fitness area that includes an outdoor gym with fitness equipment, a “stretch zone” for calisthenics, and a separate space to host personal training or small group fitness classes.
- A one-mile “fast path” dedicated bike and scooter lane adjacent to Riverside Drive provides a fast connection from Beale St. to Ashburn-Coppock (and on to Big River Crossing).
- The Campbell Clinic Circuits are one-mile walking and running loops through the park and on the bluff.
At the park’s northern entrance, the Cutbank Bluff creates the very first ADA-accessible pathway to traverse the bluff between the river and downtown. It leads visitors to AutoZone plaza and a 6,000 sq. ft. misting fountain – a spectacular entrance and a great place for hot summer runners to cool off!
In the center of the park, a fun river-themed, all-access, all-ages playground is nestled into new topography that protects kids from cars on Riverside Drive – and gives those with mobility impairments step-free access to playground equipment.
Adjacent to the playground are food and drink pavilions and the First Horizon Sunset Lounge – a beautiful deck from which to take in unmatched sunsets rolling in across the river.
More reasons to visit can be found in the dedicated area of reflection that honors Tom Lee, new public artwork, a hammock grove, an outdoor classroom, and a one-of-a-kind pollinator lab. More than 250,000 sq. ft. of open lawn space allows for large events and festivals while the tree canopy and habitat are enhanced with the addition of more than 1,000 trees and shrubs.
The new Tom Lee Park is under construction now and will open to the public in 2023. The Bluff Walk remains open through the construction period for a birds-eye view of the progress being made on the park. This project is made possible through a $61 million public-private partnership.
Visit tomleepark.org to see full details of the park design and to find out how your name can show up in Tom Lee Park.