On Sunday afternoon May 22, 2011, the City of Joplin experienced a catastrophic EF5-rated tornado that devastated the southern part of the city. Mercy Park was constructed on what is considered ground zero for the tornado and commemorates those that lost their lives and others whose lives were affected by the tragic event. Construction of the park cost nearly $5 million and was funded through the Community Development Block Grant for Disaster Recovery program administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. It has native landscaping installed around a lighted lake with a fountain and scenic overlook, green space with trails, benches, a woodland, trees, restrooms, and picnic shelters.
As a subconsultant to landscape architect SWT Design, Horner & Shifrin provided the following:
– Topographic and boundary survey for civil design of the 27 acre site
– Civil-site engineering services including the grading plan, design of the parking lot, drive entrance, boardwalk and walking trails.
– Environmental engineering services including potable water service, sanitary and storm sewer design, stormwater detention and design of a 2.5-acre lake.
– Structural engineering services including foundations for a pedestrian bridge and shelter structures.
– Electrical design services including service to all structures and site lighting.
At the dedication of the Park, Joplin Mayor Mike Seibert stated, “I’m happy to say that when people return to this site, they won’t recognize it. What once was heartbreak and devastation has lent itself to hope and a brighter tomorrow.”