Also known as River Return, environmental artist Stacy Levy created the walkway design that mimics the swirls and eddies of the San Antonio River. River return is the northernmost in the Mission Reach and likely the first to be encountered by visitors, the Mission Concepción portal tells the story of the establishment of the five Spanish Missions and announce one's arrival at Mission Concepción from the San Antonio River.
The concrete was first stained, followed by months of contractors using a needle scaler to remove the surface. What was left was a beautiful combination of stained and exposed concrete. San Antonio’s mayor commented "The San Antonio River flows through the city, its liquid presence flowing past the hardscape of the urban environment. This wonderful contrast of liquid nature and solid infrastructure is stunning.” San Antonio River Authority manager Suzanne Scott stated “With our recently recognized World Heritage designation, it is even more important to celebrate the connections between the river … to the wonderful Mission at this location.”