Tampa Riverwalk, Florida, USA | CruiseBe
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Tampa Riverwalk


Natural sights
,
nature, park, river, walking, attractions, bronze busts, monuments



Tampa Riverwalk is a phased open space and pedestrian trail development along the Hillsborough River in Tampa, Florida. The downtown Tampa portion travels alongside the Tampa Arts District and includes Curtis Hixon Park, The Macdill Park, the Tampa Museum of Art, Glazer Children's Museum, Rivergate Tower and adjacent atrium containing the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts. The Riverwalk extends to the Channelside District and is slated to connect up with part of Tampa Heights at the Water Works Park via the Future Doyle Carlton Riverwalk Segment eventually. The project dates back to the 1970s. The long-term goal is to complete a continuous path of 2.4 miles.

Construction of two parks along the Riverwalk began in 2004. In 2006, a $20 million fundraising campaign was launched to pay for the construction of Riverwalk. Tampa mayor Pam Iorio was a driving force behind the project and mayor Bob Buckhorn has continued to advance the project since he took office. A $10 million federal grant request to help complete the project was denied in 2010. The City of Tampa is developing three new segments in 2011/2012 to create 1.8 miles of the pedestrian path for the 2012 Republican National Convention in August 2012.

In 2012, commissions for six $15,000 bronze busts of prominent figures from the History of Tampa were secured by the Friends of the Riverwalk with sculptor Steven Dickey. They included:

  • Mocoso, Tocobaga, and Pohoy mound builders
  • James McKay Sr.
  • Vicente Martinez Ybor
  • Henry B. Plant
  • Eleanor McWilliams Chamberlain
  • Clara C. Frye. Nine historians including former Tampa Tribune reporter Leland Hawes and Tampa Bay History Center curator Rodney Kite-Powell made the selections.

In April 2013, six additional busts were unveiled on the Riverwalk (unveiled in a second ceremony December 2013 on the trail):

  • Cyril Blythe Andrews, a newspaper entrepreneur and local leader
  • Cody Fowler, an attorney for working to end injustices
  • Kate V. Jackson a Tampa businesswoman, philanthropist, environmentalist and local leader
  • Peter O. Knight a Tampa attorney who was also involved in local politics
  • Paulina Pedroso, an activist for Cuban independence and a civil rights leader
  • Garfield Devoe Rogers, a businessman, philanthropist and creator of Rogers Park.

 

Another six monuments were unveiled in December 2014. They included:

  • Blanche Armwood, educator and community leader
  • Herman Glogowski, first Jewish mayor of Tampa and community leader
  • Gavino Gutierrez, civil engineer who urged Vicente Ybor to locate in Tampa and early developer of Ybor City
  • Bena Wolf Maas, businesswoman, civic leader and humanitarian
  • Hugh Campbell Macfarlane, attorney, businessman and important leader in the development of West Tampa
  • Moses White, businessman, community leader and philanthropist

Cigar City Brewing has produced a "River Walk" pale ale.

Future Segments

Kennedy Blvd Segment Slated to Be Completed January 2015 The final phase includes the Kennedy Boulevard Plaza segment.

The Riverwalk is expected to span 1,460 feet of water on the eastern side of the Hillsborough River, running underneath the Kennedy Boulevard Bridge.

Once completed, the segment will link MacDill Park to Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park providing pedestrians and cyclists 1.8 miles of Riverwalk.

The total cost for the Kennedy segment is $9.2 million. The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery IV covers 70 percent of the necessary funding for the project. The TIGER grant program includes a focus on providing safe passage for pedestrians, which helps to cover Riverwalk.


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