Crews install final sections of Promenade’s tree canopy trail

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A worker uses safety cables as he does detailing on the Parkview Tree Canopy Trail, 20 feet above the St. Marys River. BRIDGETT HERNANDEZ

FORT WAYNE — Progress on downtown Fort Wayne’s riverfront reached a major milestone Feb. 28 as construction crews installed the final sections of an elevated boardwalk on the north bank of the St. Marys River.

Parkview Tree Canopy Trail, a key feature of Promenade Park’s design, stretches between the Wells Street Bridge and the Harrison Street Bridge. The walkway will provide views of the river, the park and the downtown skyline from about 20 feet above water level.

Construction crews installed the final sections of Promenade Park’s Parkview Tree Canopy Trail, an elevated boardwalk on the north bank of the St. Marys River, Feb. 28. The park is expected to open June 21. BRIDGETT HERNANDEZ

“It’s going to be a unique experience in Fort Wayne. You’re going to be walking through the trees,” said Steve McDaniel, director of Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation.

“There’s nothing like that in our area, so we’re really excited. It’s one of our key, iconic elements within our design.”

Don R. Fruchey Inc., Almet Inc. and Fetters Construction Inc. are among the companies working on the project.

The Tree Canopy Trail is 23 sections long, supported by 22 piers. McDaniel said the next step will be to “shoot the tree canopy with a laser” to determine the precise placement of the walkway’s handrails, which will be fabricated locally and installed at a later date.

With the walkway’s infrastructure now in place, McDaniel said the public will notice even more construction activity along the riverfront in preparation for Promenade Park’s grand opening June 21-23. Major areas of focus will include landscaping to enhance the tree canopy along the north bank and concrete work underneath the walkway, he said.

The Tree Canopy Trail is situated between Fort Wayne Outfitters & Bike Depot. McDaniel said a stairway or ramp way will allow access to the dock on the north bank.

Live stream and time-lapse footage of construction at the riverfront can be seen at app.oxblue.com/open/Hagerman/RiverfrontFtWayne.

Residents are invited to learn about the planning progress for the next phases of riverfront development at a public meeting 6:30-8 p.m. March 7 in the auditorium at North Side High School, 475 E. State Blvd. The public should enter through Door #1. Light snacks will be provided. For more information, visit riverfrontfw.org.