Well, that could’ve been awkward. After last week’s great news about the construction of the Tampa Riverwalk being ahead of schedule, we were left with the cold fact that the city might have no way to pay for further construction of the partially-completed Downtown Tampa walkway.
The city put their hopes in a potential grant from the Federal Department of Transportation to fund the completion of the Tampa Riverwalk.
Last Wednesday, the grant was issued in the form of $10.9 million that will fund the construction of the Downtown walkway’s two unfinished sections.
Once finished, the Tampa Riverwalk will extend 2.6 miles from the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts all the way past the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Channelside. To finish the walkway, two sections need to be completed – one heading south from Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park under the Kennedy Boulevard Bridge and a another travelling north from the Performing Arts Center to Water Works Park.
The grant comes the FDOT’s Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program which typically funds financially difficult road, rail, transit, and port projects. TIGER’s latest round of funding totals $500 million.
The $10.9 million awarded to the Tampa Riverwalk project will create 200 temporary construction jobs and hopefully foster a multitude of private businesses surrounding the walkway when it’s completed.
What do you think about the Tampa Riverwalk? Will you use it, or think anyone else will use it when it’s completed? Let us know in the comments section below.