Thursday, May 6, 2010

Evansville Needs to Finally Build an Amphitheatre and Aquarium Downtown

Since the downtown master plan came out in 2001, two hot topic proposals have been the construction of an amphitheatre and an aquarium downtown. Unfortunately, neither of these two projects have been yet to be built but that doesn't mean there isn't great potential for them downtown.

If memory serves me correctly, the Army Corps of Engineers rejected Evansville's first proposal to build an amphitheatre next to the river. I can go on and on about how pointless it is to block a riverfront amphitheatre initiative but that's not going to accomplish much. Instead I am going to make a list of locations that I believe would make for a great outdoor amphitheatre downtown..

- Riverfront Plaza
- Sunset Park
- Casino Aztar Plaza
- The lot between the museum and the Four Freedoms Monument
- Part of Mead Johnson's parking lot

As you can see, there is plenty of opportunity for an amphitheatre downtown. I also believe there is great demand for it. Thinking longterm, I would like to use a downtown ballpark as an amphitheatre on non gamedays. Therefore, a small to medium size only amphitheatre should be built.

In regards to the aquarium: It seems like there never is enough momentum to get the aquarium over the finish line. It amazes me that a town so close to the Ohio River does not have an aquarium. It's like Los Angeles not having a NFL team.

The perfect location for the aquarium is by far and away the open lot that was originally suppose to be a ballpark next to the old Jillians and Casino Aztar. The lot is plenty big enough for a massive aquarium the size of the one in Atlanta, and it's in an excellent location to construct an underground tunnel that would go beneath the Ohio River so that tourists can see all the fish in the Ohio River. It would be an overwhelming success, we just need to financial and political support for it.

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