By Jennifer Sierra
At a public meeting held in Dayton, Kentucky on Thursday evening, KZF revealed their design plans for the riverfront pier. These plans, like the riverfront development by DCI properties at Manhattan Harbour, are fluid and still conceptual. KZF provided renderings of the riverfront walkway and the Community and Transportation Planner, Eric Anderson, was on hand to answer questions about the project.
The scope of the project encompassed the entire riverfront shoreline from the Bellevue-Dayton border of O’Fallon eastward to the Route 8 entrance through the flood wall. There were various points of interest added along the winding walking trail. 2 separate pier areas that hugged the shoreline were included as well as handicap ramps that access the walkways and piers. Restrooms and parking lots were included in the plan to accommodate the crowds expected to gather at the 2 overlooks where there are buildings designated for vendors and stages for entertainment.
According to Eric Anderson from KZF, the plan is to start the construction on the west end of the city’s riverfront and work east toward the marina. The entire process could take “5, 10 or 15 years to complete,” said Anderson. It depends on the speed with which the city approves the plans, gets additional funding to pay for the project and the number of changes the plans go through. Once the city approves the plans and gives the project the green light, engineers have to get involved to make more detailed plans for KZF to submit to the Army Corps of Engineers. The price tag for the entire project is over $24 million. The walkway without piers could be completed for about $3 million.
Jack Moreland from Southbank Partners wrote the grant for which Dayton, Kentucky was awarded over $500,000.00 in October for the riverfront walkway. That money could help get the pathway started toward the Berry Street access. Moreland said there is more grant money out there and he plans to help Dayton with the grants that can be applied toward the project but that money won’t be awarded until 2018.
Once completed, the pathway will link the cities of Dayton, Bellevue, Newport, Covington and Ludlow. Jack Moreland said each section of the Riverfront Commons Trail will be unique to the city it crosses through but the walkway will also have certain things that will enable the cities to put their individual mark on the project.
As with any development, it takes time to get there. It took Manhattan Harbour over 10 years to get started and development is still going on at Smale Riverfront Park in Cincinnati, also over 10 years in the making. The Northern Kentucky river cities have a lot to look forward to.