In the early 1990s, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s plan for the Cultural District called for the creation of a riverfront park to border the northern boundary of the Cultural District. Prior to the Trust’s installation of the upper and lower levels of the Allegheny Riverfront Park, access to the waterfront in the Cultural District was limited. This project has served as a connection between the District and the river as well as catalyst for creative and artful riverfront development at many sites, including across the Allegheny River on Pittsburgh’s Northside. The Trust commissioned a first time collaboration between artist Ann Hamilton and landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh to create the park.
The Trust’s Allegheny Riverfront Park project was comprised of two phases. Phase one resulted in the creation of the lower level park, which spans along the Allegheny River from the Ninth Street Pier to the Ft. Duquesne Bridge. Phase two completed the City's connection with the river side of Ft. Duquesne Boulevard between the Ninth Street Bridge and just west of Stanwix Street.