The North Shore Riverfront Park project involved the complete redesign and rehabilitation of a 67,00 foot segment of linear park and trail facilities along the north shore of the Allegheny and Ohio rivers in downtown Pittsburgh. The area was initially designed and developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s as Clemente Park as a passive linear park to complement Point State Park across the river.
Since the time of the original park design, the surrounding area changed significantly and the park was forced to accommodate a number of unforeseen uses. River taxis and the Gateway Clipper excursions fleet regularly docked along the park to bring visitors to Three Rivers Stadium and the Science Center. The Steel Industry Heritage Corporation’s River of Steel Tours planned to use the park as a landing.
In 2000, the Sports and Exhibition Authority began working with partners to make improvements that would allow the park to better accommodate a variety of uses and users. Growing Greener funds awarded by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), leveraged with millions of private dollars, helped develop the Three Rivers Heritage Trail, which now brings cyclists, runners, and walkers through the park. Green space and passive areas were added, giving people the chance to relax and take in the spectacular view of the city skyline across river. Various memorials and statues were constructed to showcase Pittsburgh’s rich history.
“The expanded riverfront park will give families a reason to go to the North Shore, to walk, bicycle, sit on the grass, play in the new water steps, and tie up a boat or fish,” said Steve Leeper, former Executive Director of the Sports and Exhibition Authority. “It will make the North Shore appealing all year-round, not just during baseball and football games.”