The Gateway Arch gets a friend

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. | The Gateway Arch in St. Louis is no longer standing by itself.

A 34-acre park opened Saturday on the opposite bank of the Mississippi River in East St. Louis, featuring a 43-foot tall overlook of the river and an open lawn.

The park is already the site of the Gateway Geyser, which opened in 1995 and spurts water 600 feet in the air.

Much of the project’s $15 million price tag was donated years ago by St. Louis lawyers and philanthropist Malcolm W. Martin. The park is named in honor of Martin, who died in 2004.

Parks officials say the new site makes good on the desire of Eero Saarinen, the Gateway Arch’s architect, that the monument include both sides of the Mississippi River.