The main purpose of Cancer Survivor Plaza is to reach as many people as possible with the message "you can survive cancer." This life celebration plaza is located on the edge of Al Lopez Park across from Raymond James Stadium and Legends Field, at the intersection of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. and Dale Mabry Highway.
The various components of the plaza are designed to chronicle a cancer survivor's journey. It begins at the north end of the plaza with the raised sculpture platform, "Understanding Cancer". The central platform is a 13-foot high cone shaped stone monument encircled by a 24-foot diameter suspended aluminum "halo" supporting 48 individual pieces of artwork.
The journey continues along the "Road to Recovery." Adjacent to the path, 4 massive grass "waves" symbolize the challenges that must be confronted. The waves range in height from 4 feet to 15 feet and appear graceful and inviting from a distance; but, when you get closer, you begin to realize that their steep face cannot easily be scaled and overcoming them will require courage, wisdom, and stamina.
At the end of the "Road to Recovery" is found the heart of the project, a large outdoor room where life is celebrated. Here everything stimulates one's senses to be alive. The Plaza is encircled by a 120 foot in diameter walk which is surrounded by 14 additional plaques encouraging us to survive. The space is enclosed by a Living Wall planted with native dwarf gamma grass which sways, peacefully separating the space from the noise of the adjacent road.
The walk on one half of the Plaza is shaded by date palm trees; the other half of the walk is covered by a simple arc shaped aluminum trellis covered with bougainvillea.
As if Lopez needs reminding of his rival, the NY Yankees' practice field "Legends Field" can be seen from the hilltops of "The Road to Recovery" in the Cancer Survivor's Plaza of Al Lopez Park.