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Outdoor dining, hammock park: New ideas for 5 Dayton riverfront parks


A new master plan is bursting with bold (and boulder) ideas for Dayton’s riverfront.

A zipline over a ravine at Wesleyan MetroPark. A rockscape “beach” plaza at Deeds Point MetroPark. River platforms and a new pedestrian bridge at Sunrise and Sunset parks.

And RiverScape would offer more interactive experiences and would be part of a downtown park loop.

RELATED: Dayton’s riverfront: Bold ideas include rockscape beach plaza

Here’s some of the key details of the riverfront master plan, which are being shared with the public today at noon and 6 p.m. at the downtown Dayton Metro Library.

RiverScape MetroPark

The big moves for RiverScape include:

  • Create a pedestrian bridge connection that uses the existing Riverside Drive bridge abutments to link to McPherson Town neighborhood.
  • Maintain a central plaza to use as flexible space for festival events.
  • Remove the fire department building at Monument and Main streets to create park space and re-purpose communications building to use for a riverfront restaurant with outdoor dining.
  • Reconfigure Monument Avenue.

Other improvements could include a reconfigured plaza at Patterson Boulevard and Monument Avenue; enhanced roadway crossings at North Main and Monument Avenue; terraced seating at both the north and south ends of River Run; a new boat rental facility; nature play space along the water front and other park enhancements on the north side of the river.

RELATED: Dayton rivers: 20-year plan tries to make Dayton rivers more accessible

Island MetroPark

Some big proposals for Island MetroPark include:

  • Extend the island south to increase nesting habitat and create a retaining wall for a paddling pass through at the dam.
  • Convert the East Helena Street to a pedestrian-friendly, at-grade crossing with traffic calming features to create an idyllic park drive.
  • Create a new backwater creek that snakes through the park.
  • Connect bike path to Kettering promenade with a pedestrian bridge and habitat overlook.
  • Expand East Helena Street culvert to create a padding pass through.

Other ideas include renovating the band shell, offering a pedestrian bridge and a new nature play area.

RELATED: Beer garden, new crossings and more: Big ideas for Dayton’s riverfront

Deeds Point MetroPark

Deeds Point could be in store for some big changes. Here’s a few of the most bold ideas for the park:

  • Construct new sun deck at the point, with waterproof covered seating facing the fountain in the river.
  • Create a rockscape beach plaza with boulders at top of levee and cafe seating that can be moved.
  • Expand green space for flexible programming
  • New connections with future commercial and residential development.

Other ideas for the park include offering a hammock garden and slacklining opportunities and a new “adventure” playscape. Parking could be configured, and rain gardens could be added.

Sunrise MetroPark and Sunset park

The master plan has a lot to say about these parks, located across from each other on the Great Miami River. Here’s some of the big ideas:

  • Create a new “iconic” pedestrian bridge linking the east and west sides of river, while offering a new vantage point for the park system.
  • Expand McIntosh Park to the riverfront by closing Negley Place road to vehicular traffic to Orth Avenue.
  • Expand art terrace along riverfront in front of Dayton Art Institute, beginning the art walk and remove existing tennis courts.
  • Improve the experience under the Interstate-75 overpass, including rotating art pieces, lighting installations, interactive features and music.
  • Make North Sunset Park a “highly programmed hub” of play spaces and recreation opportunities.

Other projects could include a play space, forest terrace, sculpture terrace and boulder terrace and water runnel feature. Other additions could be a river meadow, loop trail and new benches and river platforms. The plan proposes a pedestrian bridge entry plaza, greeting pedestrians with sculptures, gardens and food trucks.

Wesleyan MetroPark

Proposals for this park, located along the Wolf Creek, include:

  • Create a wild nature trail on the west side of the creek, leading to high point observation structure.
  • Create a mountain bike skills trail
  • Expand trail towards Trotwood and create natural surface trails along the paved trail for creek access and nature exploration.



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