BRADENTON -- Change was the theme at a groundbreaking Monday morning for the city’s much-anticipated Riverwalk project, as a crowd of more than 300 munched on delicacies and listened to project leaders talk of how the $6.2 million dollar effort will transform Bradenton.
Dale Weidemiller, who has volunteered as the Riverwalk project manager, predicted a “lifestyle change,” and called Riverwalk a “game-changer” for the city. Mayor Wayne Poston said the project was a key step in making Bradenton a place to not only visit, but also stay and live in.
Weidemiller also emphasized that the overall project was based on extensive input over two years from community members who responded to surveys and attended charettes coordinated by Realize Bradenton, the city’s arts and culture nonprofit arm.
“This was really designed by you,” he told the crowd.
Riverwalk is expected to be finished within a year and will include an expanded amphitheater for music, increased shading for families, an interactive water fountain, a skate park, sand volleyball courts and 19 new docks. It will also feature Florida-friendly landscaping and cost-effective LED lighting.
Events already planned for the area include a blues festival and rowing competitions.