Friends of the 457 - Mason City, Iowa

History of the 457
Get 457 E-News
Support the 457

Cannonball Educational Terrace Proposed
Posted Date:
Erosion at the 457 Rotary Cannonball site requires action.

   One of the very first concerns for preserving the 457 back in 2003 is now once again at the top of the "to do" list. In 2003, one of Gene Green's first actions was to shore up the erosion that was nibbling away at the Cannonball's footings using RR ties and backfill on the slope to the north from the locomotive.  The eventual construction of the depot platform and roof created increased runoff from the top of the slope, and despite precautions taken during planning phases of the shelter, erosion continues.

   To address this, The Friends of the 457 have developed a two or three phase plan for landscaping the north slope and creating educational and picnic terraces.  The plans have been presented to the Park Board and are pending budgetary approval. The reason to plan in several phases is strictly due to funding uncertainties. Clearly, once "ground is broken" on a hillside, it would be best to complete the entire project rather than take three years and risk more erosion.

   Additional funding from donations will be sought in order to speed up this project if possible. Landscape architectural plans are being drawn up to be ready for bidding this spring.  We anticipate start of the project after July, 2014. Contact Dennis Wilson (See "Contact Us" tab) to pledge your donation.

   Many thanks to Dave Hopper of Natural Plus Landscaping, Clear lake, Ken Wind of Bergland-Cram Architects, Mason City, and the Mason City Parks Dept. for the many hours of initial work done thus far to create a comprehensive plan.

   Watch for on-going news on this project beginning late March, 2014.  We are excited that this will be a great enhancement to use of East Park, as well as to preserve the Cannonball site.