Nathalie Weinstein has an article up in the Daily Journal of Commerce about the City of Portland moving forward on the construction of a greenway along the South Waterfront’s riverfront property.
It sounds like the project is far from overcoming all obstacles, but Portland Parks & Recreation intends to select a construction manager/general contractor for the project soon.
The effort will come with improved fish habitat along the bank of the river, and it will include separate bicycle and walking paths:
The first phase of the project includes construction of a five-block-long mix of lawn, park and plaza areas along the Willamette River between Southwest Gibbs Street and Lane Street. Below the green space, which will have separate paths for bikes and pedestrians, a 25,000-square-foot gravel beach will provide improved fish habitat. The plan calls for eventually creating 100-foot-wide parks along the river for 1.2 miles between the Marquam Bridge and an existing trail at Johns Landing.
I got the chance to ride the existing trail from John’s Landing after last night’s BikePortland Get Together at Macadam’s, and it’s a real nice bit of infrastructure. At a few points along the way I was riding gloriously right above the river, all lit up by the city’s lights. However, it diverts you onto the striped bike lane on SW Bond Street once you hit the South Waterfront, which is not nearly as pleasant.
The prospect of connecting the riverside bike path all the way along the SoWa up into Tom McCall Waterfront Park is an exciting one that would do wonders for recreation and bicycle connectivity in SW Portland.
Project partner TriMet is providing $1 million for the habitat improvements, which will give it environmental mitigation credits needed to proceed with the Portland-to-Milwaukie light-rail project, Argentina said.
This brings to mind the fact that it will also be a terrific connection from SW Portland to the Max stop sited for the west side of the river and will surely help many folks that commute by multiple modes going either direction. All in all, I hope to see the project move forward. The environmental, recreational and mobility benefits of it seem sound.