Fifteen communities and agencies
along 99 miles of the Great Miami River corridor are
collaborating with the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) on a
recreation riverfront study through the USACE Planning
Assistance to States program.
"There has been surge in
recreation riverfront development along the Great Miami River in
the past several years," says Janet Bly, Miami Conservancy
District (MCD) General Manager. "The study will look at
what's been done, what's planned and what we might be missing in
terms of opportunity along the river.
"This effort will help the
communities set priorities, define funding strategies and
develop an action plan for implementing projects," Bly
MCD and Montgomery County applied
for the planning assistance, which requires a 100-percent match.
Montgomery County will provide $50,000. MCD will provide
$25,000, and local communities and metroparks together will
contribute $38,000. MCD also will provide $12,000 in in-kind
services as USACE's "local sponsor." USACE will
provide $125,000 in services for a total project of $250,000, if
the study is approved as proposed.
"Through our MCOFuture
initiative, we found that the most successful counties are those
that collaborate and cooperate with their regional
partners," says Montgomery County Commission President Dan
Foley. "This is another example of our region working
together to produce greater opportunity. Montgomery County and
our community partners recognize the importance of a thriving
river corridor, not only for its recreational value but as an
economic development driver that will create jobs and other
opportunities for our citizens."
The participating communities and agencies are the cities of
Sidney, Piqua, Troy, Dayton, Riverside, West Carrollton,
Miamisburg, Franklin, Middletown and Hamilton along with Miami
County Park District, Five River MetroParks, MetroParks of
Butler County, Montgomery County and MCD.
Currently, there are many
projects in various stages of implementation along Ohio's Great
Corridor, the name often used for the span of the Great Miami
River from Sidney to Hamilton. This spring, the RiversEdge Park
and Amphitheater opened in Hamilton. Among the upcoming projects
are Dayton River Run, bikeway extensions, and Troy marina
improvements. Nearly 20 more projects are envisioned but
The direct financial impact of
outdoor recreation is substantial, both nationally and in Ohio.
In Ohio, outdoor recreation provides 196,000 direct Ohio jobs,
provides $17.4 billion in consumer spending each year, and $1.3
billion in state/local tax revenue, according to the Outdoor
The planning assistance could
include studies, strategic planning or conceptual physical
master planning. It will not include detailed design, a set of
construction documents, or provide funding for either.
"But we expect it will give
us a much better idea of the task before us in terms of
recreation development opportunities along the river,"
"And clarify our vision for
the corridor as a recreation destination for the region,"