July 19, 2016 - A contract for final design, engineering development, construction documents, project bidding, and construction administration for the first phase of riverfront development will be discussed at tonight’s City Council meeting. The meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. in Room 030 on the garden level at Citizens Square, 200 E. Berry St.

Final passage could occur on Tuesday, July 26. The contract investment of $1.7 million is part of the $6 million in Legacy funding previously approved by City Council.

Last month, Mayor Tom Henry joined community leaders and riverfront advocates to unveil the schematic designs for the first phase of riverfront development to enhance Fort Wayne and the region. 

Development would occur in eight areas on the south and north sides of the St. Marys River between Harrison Street and the historic Wells Street Bridge. Highlights of the plans include a promenade, park pavilion, event lawn, entry plaza with sculpture/signage, urban bioswale, educational water feature, urban streetscape, central plaza, urban riverfront terraces, elevated boardwalk, dock, interactive sculpture, and children’s play area.

The first phase of riverfront development will be focused on the public spaces in a park setting. As a result, the Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department led by Parks Director Al Moll will lead and manage the riverfront development efforts. Anticipated future private riverfront development would occur in areas surrounding the public spaces. 

For the construction phase to begin, the Fort Wayne Board of Park Commissioners is in the process of acquiring three properties along Superior and Harrison streets.

It’s anticipated construction could start in mid-to-late 2017 with completion in mid-to-late 2018. The projected construction investment would likely be $20 million. Potential funding sources could be Regional Cities, Legacy, private contributions, and resources from the previous allocation of Legacy funding approved by City Council.

The Community Foundation of Greater Fort Wayne has committed to providing $3 million toward the riverfront implementation efforts. In addition, the Allen County-Fort Wayne Capital Improvement Board (CIB) has set aside $3 million to be used for property acquisition for riverfront development.

The team leading the design work is Riverworks Design Group, comprised of Design Collaborative, Forum Studio, Hoch Associates, Engineering Resources, American Structurepoint, and One Lucky Guitar.

Residents wanting to stay connected to the Riverfront Fort Wayne initiative may visit www.RiverfrontFW.org.