Cleveland - Cleveland Metroparks announced it was awarded more than $1.6 million from the federal Boating Infrastructure Grant Program to construct 18 day-use boat slips along the Cuyahoga River in the City of Cleveland. The boat slips will be constructed in both Heritage Park and Rivergate Park and will provide the only publicly accessible boat slips along the six-mile ship channel on the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland.
The slips will offer recreational boaters new opportunities to further explore Cleveland’s waterfront trails, restaurants and music venues. Trail connections continue to evolve with current access from the river and lakefront to the terminus of the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail at Canal Basin Park, and future trail connections including Red Line Greenway, Cleveland Foundation Centennial Lake Link Trail and eventually connections to Wendy Park via the Wendy Park Bridge.
“The mission of Cleveland Metroparks is connecting people with nature, which includes finding ways to enhance amenities and recreation opportunities for boaters along the Cuyahoga River,” said Cleveland Metroparks CEO Brian M. Zimmerman. “To receive the support for this project at a time when the Cuyahoga River is the focus of a 50-year celebration of revival is a fitting testament to the river’s resurgence as a place for recreation, as well as industry.”
The construction in Heritage Park on the West Bank of The Flats adjacent to Canal Basin Park will include 12 day-use slips and construction in Rivergate Park on the East Bank of the Flats will include 6 day-use slips. The slips will be ADA accessible and will be able to accommodate non-trailerable boats of at least 26 feet in length. The Boating Infrastructure Grant Program (BIG) award was coordinated through a partnership with the Ohio Division of Natural Resources (ODNR).
The Cuyahoga River was recently announced as “River of the Year” by American Rivers, noting the river’s rebirth as a model for other cities.
Cleveland Metroparks will be working closely with the City of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, United States Coast Guard, ODNR, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority and the Cuyahoga River Safety Task Force to ensure safe operations of recreational activities and industry along this important corridor to Lake Erie.
Construction is anticipated to completed by 2021. Total project costs are approximately $2.2 million with the remainder of project costs coming from Cleveland Metroparks capital funds. Funding for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Boating Infrastructure Grant Program comes from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund.
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