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Agreement Paves the Way for Multi-Million Dollar Expansion of Detroit’s Riverside Park, Exterior Improvement of Michigan Central Depot

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Agreement Paves the Way for Multi-Million Dollar Expansion of Detroit’s Riverside Park, Exterior Improvement of Michigan Central Depot

• Ambassador Bridge Co. will transfer to the city 4.8 acres of prime riverfront property, and provide $5M for park improvements
• City to transfer 3 acres of undeveloped parkland to Bridge Co. it requires for possible second span.
• Construction of new baseball and soccer fields, picnic and fishing areas, to begin this fall
• 1,050 windows in the Michigan Central Train Depot will be installed by December 31, 2015, securing the exterior of that landmark.

An agreement between the City of Detroit and the Ambassador Bridge Company will pave the way for a significantly expanded and improved Riverside Park and the renovation of the exterior of the Michigan Central Depot, Mayor Mike Duggan announced today.

Once the agreement is approved by Detroit City Council, the Ambassador Bridge Company will transfer 4.8 acres of prime waterfront property to the City of Detroit to expand Riverside Park to the west. The Bridge Company also will pay the city $3 million which will be invested in Riverside Park improvements.

Riverside Park Concept Plan “This agreement gives the city the land and funding it needs to create a marquee park at Riverside and give Detroiters even greater access to our riverfront,” Mayor Mike Duggan said. “At the same time, it provides a dramatic improvement in the appearance of the Michigan Central Depot, making the future redevelopment of that landmark more likely.”

The funding being provided by the Bridge Company also will allow the city to redevelop a 3.4-acre piece of unused city land to expand Riverside Park to the north. Improvements to be made to the park starting in fall 2015 during this first phase include:
• New Baseball Diamond, soccer field and multi-use play areas on the northern city parcel
• New Riverfront Playscape
• New benches, picnic tables & shelter
• Improved Waterfront Promenade
• Improved Landscaping.

Subject to the approval of the state and federal regulators, the City will give the Ambassador Bridge Company title to an approximately three acre strip of undeveloped city parkland that runs parallel and immediately west of the Ambassador Bridge. A 100-foot strip along the waterfront of the transferred property will remain open to the public.

Riverside Park Phase 1 & 2 Upon receiving title of the three-acre city parcel, the Bridge Company will provide the city an additional $2 million, which will fund the Phase 2 expansion of Riverside Park of the 4.8-acre western parcel. Those improvements are expected to begin in 2018, after the lease expires for the warehouse on that site. Once the lease expires, the Ambassador Bridge Company will demolish the warehouse at its own expense, clearing the way for redevelopment of the land for the park expansion. The company states in the development agreement that no remediation of hazardous materials is required on the site under the environmental cleanup criteria for its current use. It has given the city access to the property to conduct its own environmental study of the property, which is now under way.

The Phase 2 expansion of Riverside Park will include the following:
• The City will transform the waterfront land into Fisherman’s Overlook, which will include:
o Seawall improvements
o New Sidewalk
o New Benches
o Extended Promenade

If the Ambassador Bridge Company receives necessary approvals, the company intends to use the three acres for a second span of the Ambassador Bridge; creating jobs and spurring additional development in Detroit.

"This agreement allows for Riverside Park to become the Marquee Park in Detroit while protecting the possibility for a second span of the Ambassador Bridge," said Matt Moroun.

Riverside Park Concept Plan

Riverside Park Phase 1 & 2

Riverside Park Exhibit

Proposed Riverside Park Agreement

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