RiverWalk west expansion quietly opens to bikers, pedestrians


By Louis Aguilar

Detroit— The first portion of the west RiverWalk, the hugely popular downtown shoreline pathway, has quietly opened.

The 20-acre parcel was formally the site of a newspaper printing plant and is located at 1801 W. Jefferson Ave., which is roughly bordered by Joe Louis Arena on the east and the main U.S. Post Office on the west.

On Wednesday afternoon, the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy opened the 30-foot-wide pedestrian/bicycle pathway after the parcel had its electrical power turned on, said Marc Pasco, spokesman for the non-profit conservancy that oversees the RiverWalk.

“The path is extra wide because we wanted to give room to the many people who fish,” Pasco said Wednesday.

Portions of the open green area are still fenced in to let the grass mature, Pasco said. A formal opening is planned for the fall.

The west RiverWalk pathway ends at Riverfront Towers on the east. The path winds around the private property and rejoins the east RiverWalk in front of Joe Louis Arena. The western border is Rosa Parks Boulevard, which dead-ends at the river’s edge.

The conservancy is working to extend the RiverWalk from “bridge to bridge,” or from the McArthur Bridge, which connects Belle Isle to mainland Detroit, to the Ambassador Bridge. The conservancy has not yet secured all the land needed to build the path all the way to the Ambassador Bridge, Pasco said.

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From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140725/METRO01/307250093#ixzz38mVzUiS1http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140725/METRO01/307250093/RiverWalk-west-expansion-quietly-opens-bikers-pedestrians