GREAT FALLS — The River’s Edge Trail is one of the most frequented places in Great Falls, as people use it daily. There will be sections of it that will be closed until October that are getting renovations and upgrades, including the section that stretches from the Central Avenue West Bridge to the crosswalk next to the skate park on River Drive.
The “River Drive North Trail Improvements Project” will begin September 15, 2021 and finish by October 28, 2021, weather permitting. The project will replace the existing asphalt trail with a concrete trail surface from Central Avenue northbound to the crosswalk near the Skate Park on the River’s Edge Trail.
The portion of River’s Edge Trail within the work zone will be closed during construction. In addition, there may be periodic lane closures on River Drive North.
River’s Edge Trail president Bruce Pollington said this project has been on the books for some time and that he is glad it finally getting completed so more people can use a newer and improved trail.
“We’re replacing some sections of asphalt that are in pretty sad shape. The asphalt has a duration of about 20 years and we’re well past that so it’s time to get the replacements done,” Pollington said. “It’s next to the highway and we want to make some improvements at the same time so it will be a really nice upgrade to this section of trail.”
The River’s Edge has more than 53 miles of trail and Pollington said the funding for the asphalt project is coming partly from the Missouri Madison River Fund as well as the city and the River’s Edge Trail Foundation.
He says he can’t tell at this point what the final cost of the various projects will be due to the number of entities involved with them, but estimated a different upcoming project on the River Road overpass by the Great Falls Tribune will cost at least $2.25 million.
“It’s construction so it’s going to take longer and cost more than expected,” Pollington said jokinly. “But they shouldn’t take too long. Our goal with any of these projects is to not interfere with traffic on River Drive and we should be able to accomplish that.”
“We are very appreciative of the community and their support which has made River’s Edge one of the most utilized and loved public facilities of Great Falls.”