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Next Up For The Ohio River, Merging A Park With Climate Adaptation

River Heritage Conservancy Executive Director Scott Martin looks upon the Falls of The Ohio on the Ohio River.
Ryan Van Velzer
River Heritage Conservancy Executive Director Scott Martin looks upon the Falls of The Ohio on the Ohio River.

The parks director who oversaw the creation of the Parklands of Floyds Fork plans to discuss a new project this Friday, one that combines a park and climate adaptation.

Scott Martin is now the executive director of a nonprofit called the River Heritage Conservancy, which is amassing hundreds of acres of shoreline, scrap yards, landfills, fill pits, quarries and river camps sitting idly across the river from Louisville in Indiana.

“Our look, is to take a look at the Ohio, which is the largest public space in our community, and say ‘what can we do to redefine our relationship with it’,” Martin said.

Martin hopes to transform that land into a new landscape park, one that rivals the designs of Louisville's cherished Olmsted parks. His vision includes lawns, hiking trails, forests, wetlands and elevated pathways designed to experience river flooding from a safe distance.

“What we’ve challenged our designers to do is design a park that not only is resilient, but also allows people to visit the park when it floods,” he said in an interview last December.

Martin plans to speak at the Ohio River Discussion Series held Friday 21 at 6 p.m. at Endless Summer Paddle & Coffee.  The discussion is titled “Scott Martin: Climate Change and the Ohio River Waterfront.”

The event is free and open to the public.

Ryan Van Velzer is WFPL's Energy and Environment Reporter. Email Ryan at rvanvelzer@lpm.org.