California artist Will Nettleship was selected in 1990 to
participate as a member of a design team charged with
preparing a design master plan for the Old CrossCutCanalLinearPark. The design team worked closely with community
representatives in developing concepts and designs for the park. Artwork
components, which are integrated into the overall design of the park, include a
120 foot section of retaining wall at the south end of the park; stamped
patterns in the concrete along the bike path; concrete spillways; and a seat
node. All components contain abstracted
designs based on views of the profile of Camelback Mountain, which stands prominently
above the north end of the park. The
artist views these images as jazz iterations of the mountain’s distinctive
profile. Visitors to the park can walk
the main path from the south end to the north, viewing the artwork as they
go. At the north end, they can rest on
the bench in the artist-designed seat node and contemplate the view of
Camelback Mountain, which is the source of the artwork.
Built in 1888 to carry
irrigation water from the Arizona Canal south to the Grand Canal, the Old Cross
Cut Canal has over the years evolved into a floodway for storm drainage. In 1990, the City of Phoenix agreed to join
the Flood Control District of Maricopa County and Salt River Project in
improving the Old Cross Cut Canal as a drainage channel. The improvement consisted of replacing the
existing open channel with a concrete box culvert, which now runs underground
from Indian School Road to McDowell Road.
The design of the box culvert was completed by Greiner, Inc.