The four waterways that converge in downtown Dayton flow through parks and neighborhoods all over the city. Many of these corridors host our bikeways—part of the nation’s largest off-road trail network—linking regional towns and attractions along hundreds of miles of trail. These rivers offer beautiful places to relax, play and exercise just a short walk from many homes, businesses, and attractions in the city.
Currently however, some places along our river corridors lack public open space along the waterways. People can’t reach the water. Where they can, there are no amenities. Much of the Wolf Creek is inaccessible to dense neighborhoods in West Dayton. A series of parks along the east side of the Stillwater River north of downtown serve the adjacent residents, but the dense neighborhoods on the west side of the river have no access. The bikeway runs along both sides of the Great Miami River downtown, but it’s difficult to find a way down to the riverbank. This restricts opportunities that the rivers offer to Dayton’s residents, workers, students and visitors.
The Dayton Riverfront Plan expands our open space along the rivers. Contiguous public access to bikeways, trails, fishing spots and river put-ins, as well as picnic shelters and open areas are the key to unleashing the potential of our waterways for everyone. The Plan envisions expanding DeWeese Park and the Stillwater Bikeway across the river to serve the Riverdale and North Riverdale neighborhoods. Also envisioned is building the bikeway and expanding open space up both sides of the Wolf Creek and a pedestrian promenade along the east bank of the Great Miami River, from near Sinclair College to OnMain and the University of Dayton. Creating public parks and open spaces on our waterways is a foundational ambition of the Riverfront Plan, and the work has already begun.