Friends of River Park: Guaranteeing Access to the River

The Connecticut River is an extraordinary natural resource running right through the Upper Valley, but public access to the river in Lebanon is limited. It became clear during Lyme's Neighborhood Planning Process that access and open space were missing in West Lebanon, and these became key elements of the River Park Master Plan.

The community's support for this project was paramount in its planning and permitting, and the Friends of River Park will continue to be partners in River Park's success as an extension of the West Lebanon community.

Non-Profit Ownership of the Riverfront
The "Friends of River Park" is now a non-profit organization that will own and maintain the park along the river. River Park will grant a conservation easement to the Upper Valley Land Trust that will guarantee public access to the waterfront, proudly fulfilling our promise to our West Lebanon neighbors.

A Private-Public Partnership
Lyme Properties has pledged a financial contribution as “start-up capital” for the new non-profit. We hope the City of Lebanon, TransCanada (Wilder Dam owner), and other Upper Valley organizations will work with Friends of River Park to create something special along the river.

A Keystone Parcel for Contiguous Recreational Access:
River Park provides the best location for river access and recreation directly downstream of the Wilder Dam. “A Vision for Recreational Access” highlights the potential for River Park to connect existing (and planned) trail networks in the Upper Valley.


Launching a Riverfront Design Competition:
Lyme Properties sponsored a Landscape Design Competition for the site to help Friends of River Park in envisioning what could be done to improve access and recreation along the Connecticut River.


Join the Mailing List

None of this could have been accomplished without the support of our neighbors. Your participation in our planning process, petition for zoning changes within the site, and support for the Site Plan and Sub-division applications has demonstrated a new model for public/private partnerships. Your support has been personally gratifying and Lyme reiterates our commitment to developing the site in a responsible manner.
— David Clem, Lyme Properties

"Friends of River Park" News:

River Park is the result of unprecedented collaboration between West Lebanon citizens and a private developer. Learn more about Lyme's Neighborhood Planning Process that led to the Master Plan:

The Master Plan for River Park is the result of a series of proactive and collaborative meetings with the citizens of West Lebanon, N.H.

the Neighborhood Planning Process

Community Involvement

The community's support of River Park has been overwhelmingly positive despite the drawn-out development process.


The citizens of Lebanon voted overwhelmingly in support of a public referendum that allowed for the Master Plan of River Park

The Public Referendum

As a direct abutter who was initially highly skeptical of any proposed development of the property (I was of the “not in my back yard!” mindset), I can tell you with absolute confidence that I will be truly happy to see River Park come into being. And yes, it *is* in my back yard!
— Lauren “Duff” Cummings, West Lebanon Resident
From the meetings I have attended and in talking with the neighbors, we overwhelmingly want this River Park complex... This adds to the Lebanon tax base. Why would we not want to have top notch options to help defray that tax increase in our town?
— John and Rebecca Foster, West Lebanon Residents
The city needs this. It will create jobs, add to the tax base, allow water access for the public and will be done tastefully and they will be respectful of the environment. Vote YES Lebanon!!! This project needs your support!
— Donald Curtis, W. Lebanon Resident