Workers are digging into a new project that will transform a west-side Dayton levee with a ramp that will allow easier access to the Great Miami River Trail and provide a place for kayakers to safely exit the water, according to its builder.
The project is the latest designed to make the river more accessible for recreation, said Kurt Rinehart, chief engineer for the Miami Conservancy District.
“It will be good for the bicyclists and the pedestrians, also if we need to get vehicles in, either for kayaks or emergency vehicles,” Rinehart said. “It’s a good place to get access to the river.”
The ramp is going in directly behind the Dayton Cultural and RTA Transit Center on Edwin C. Moses Boulevard. The construction area spans about 1,000 feet south of the West Third Street Bridge toward Interstate 75. Weather permitting, the ramp should be completed by the end of the year, he said.
Workers are removing a portion of Bank Street, which was vacated to allow for widening of the levee to accommodate the ramp as well as make it easier for the Miami Conservancy District to maintain, Rinehart said.
The new concrete ramp will provide kayakers using Dayton’s new $4.5 million River Run, which opened in May, not only a safe place to get out of the water, but a place to park while using the river. So long as space is available, the public can park in the lot at the Dayton Cultural and RTA Transit Center, according to a Dayton spokeswoman.
A $393,000 contract with R.B. Jergens Contractors, Inc., is covering demolition, new earthwork and construction of the ramp. A future phase that may include amenities such as a walkway, lighting, benches and swings is not yet funded, according to the Miami Conservancy District.