Work planned to ‘refresh’ Rosa Parks Circle

Grand Rapids
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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Grand Rapids Art Museum on Tuesday looked ahead to the 20-year anniversary of Ecliptic, the art installation that defines Rosa Parks Circle downtown, as conservators outlined plans to spruce it up.

The piece that transformed the plaza off Monroe Avenue and Monroe Center into a major gathering space has seen better days, so the city is planning several minor projects like replacing the rings around the skating rink and upgrading the restroom area and stage.

It won’t be a complete overhaul, but the city sees it as an important step forward.

“This space sees well over 700,000 visitors ever year with private events, public events, just daily park users coming to this space, so there’s a tremendous amount of wear and tear. It’s a chance for us to refresh this important space,” David Marquardt, the director of Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation, said during the “Community Conversation: Ecliptic, past, present and future” event at the GRAM.

Repair work should begin in early 2020.

Maya Lin, who also designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial wall in Washington, D.C., is the artist behind Ecliptic. It features water in three forms: a winter ice rink, mist fountain and table of flowing water.

She also has an exhibition called Flow, which is about the Great Lakes and Grand River, on display at the GRAM until September.

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