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For years, the riverfront between the Senator Sid Buckwold and Traffic Bridges had been a large gravel parking lot and boat launch. The City recognized that the area had the potential to be the heart of Saskatoon’s business and social corridor. The riverfront portion is an important opportunity to improve the community fabric, and to enhance the functional, aesthetic and landscape characteristics of this critically important site.
The City developed the Master Plan for the Phase I riverfront in 2003, and the Provincial Government provided $4 million in capital funding to begin the redevelopment. In 2006, the Government of Canada provided a $3 million grant and the City of Saskatoon provided an additional $2.76 million. The riverfront project includes:
- a riverwalk for close-to-the-water strolling;
- river viewing areas to strengthen the concept of the "river as a stage";
- a pedestrian bridge;
- a site for a feature building;
- boat docks to support and enhance river activities and events;
- a pavilion with seasonal food service and year-round washrooms;
- a children’s water play area;
- amphitheatres to support performances and other events; and,
- a river tributary and garden.
Construction began in the spring of 2004 on the rough landscape, the "hard edges" and overlooks on the riverbank, and the construction of underground utilities to service the park. In 2005 and 2006 construction was completed on the landscaping and pathways including the installation of guardrails, sun shelters, streetscape furniture, irrigation, and lighting. The "suspension" bridge across the new "river tributary" and garden was completed, and entrances to the site from backshore area and Meewasin Trails were developed. In 2008 the water play feature and pavilion opened. The 'Saskatchewan River Run" waterplay feature interprets the geography and natural and cultural heritage of the basin in a children's wather play area. The pavilion is home of Prairie Fare concession and also includes washrooms and a seating area.
2009 saw the construction of the river garden and tributary walk, and installation of a seasonal public docks which will allow recreational boaters access to the riverfront. The river garden and tributary walk provides a gateway to River Landing from the Senator Sid Buckwold Bridge and from downtown.
Last updated March 13, 2014