By Travis Gettys
The Cincinnati Enquirer
FORT WRIGHT - During the Civil War, Union forces built batteries along Northern Kentucky hillsides to protect Cincinnati from Confederate attack.
The city of Fort Wright, along with Northern Kentucky University and the Behringer-Crawford Museum, aim to protect one of the few remaining batteries in the area and establish a park at the site.
The Cincinnati design firm Human Nature Inc. presented several ideas Wednesday to City Council, which asked architects to make the park available for use as soon as possible.
"We could make it available for picnicking and trails almost right away without a lot of effort, and then build the rest over time," said landscape architect Chris Manning.
The city and its partners could know later this month if they've been approved by Scripps Howard Center for Civic Engagement for a $45,697 grant, which the three applicants would match with $31,000 of labor and other contributions.
Public use might generate interest for future grants, said landscape architect Gary Wolnitzek, and the park could be built in phases.
Human Nature designers would incorporate area history with elements of nature at the site, Manning said, showing council examples of the company's work at Theodore M. Berry International Friendship Park and Voice Of America Park.
For example, Manning said, landscaping at the latter park incorporates circular patterns, which mimic radio signals radiating from Voice Of America.
"You have this notion of a center where messages are broadcast around the world," he said.
In addition to battlements at the proposed park, designers have studied trees and a house at the site, said architect Jim Warner.
A planned excavation by NKU students could uncover other elements to be used in the park's design, he said.
The site's natural landscape will make it relatively easy for designers to inexpensively develop desired features, Wolnitzek said, including a planned amphitheater.
"The topography is set up perfectly for that," Wolnitzek said.
The park will likely be designed for passive activities, rather than sports.
Planned walking trails would wind past the hilltop battery, where hikers could have a view south to the AA Highway and north to Cincinnati, said City Administrator Larry Klein.
County joins stadium suit
Q&A: What's not to like about the deal?
Inmate slugs Erpenbeck over TV
Energy, fresh ideas coveted by employers
Two bridge options dropped
IN THE TRISTATE
Workers must pass airport security
Clermont devising growth strategy
Colerain trustees compromise on subdivision runoff
County picks up 8-year-old plan to install home sewers
Symphony ready to tackle budget
Fernald cleanup firm cited
Schools get grant for math, science
No trust in Monroe, residents want out
$15M plan for voter education questioned
Archbishop faces faithful at public forum
Kings Island: Now playing...
Ross cutting costs after issue's failure
Public safety briefs
Monroe to keep open enrollment this fall
West Chester urged to file plans to protect grant for museum
West Chester weighs cost of swimming pool project
Lawyers sift evidence in Watkins shooting
Zoo launches wildlife conservation lectures
Bronson: Cop nearly lost his life, so we don't want him
Crowley: A George Clooney sighting would be a boost for Nick
Good Things Happening
'Moose' Jones spun tales of old Newport
M.A. Walters, 85, taught in Terrace Park
Battery park moves closer
Sack Tenet, senator says
Boone residents appeal ruling
City moves ahead on townhomes
N. Ky. briefs