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Sylvan Slough Natural Area

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  1. Natural area
  2. Picnic area

About the Park 

It took seven years for the City of Rock Island to transform a blighted industrial property on the Mississippi River into a unique demonstration area for Retain the Rain, a program of the not-for-profit organization River Action. The natural area incorporates native plantings, bioswales, permeable paving, and other initiatives designed to educate the public about reduction of storm water runoff.

Buildings were surgically deconstructed to form the architectural features of the natural area and to reincorporate salvaged material into the landscape. Materials suitable for reuse on-site were separated from materials hauled to a landfill. Brick was ground up and used as permeable paths, and precast panels were removed intact to be used as risers and walkways.

Other Park features

  • Bald eagle observation area
  • Interpretative signs
  • Views of historic Sylvan Island, Arsenal Island, and Arsenal Power Dam
  • Adjacent to the Great River Recreation Trail
  • Parking available for the 64-mile Great River Trail and Sylvan Slough access

View a detailed map of the park.

Parks and Recreation Department
4303 24th Street
 Activity Guide IconRock Island, IL 61201 
 Ph: (309) 732-7275
 Fx: (309) 732-7278
Email     ePark  
 7:00 am - 6:00 pm      
 Monday - Thursday      
 7:00 am - 5:00 pm       
 9:00 am - 1:00 pm