Detroit's West Riverfront Park prepares for rebirth

- The revitalization of Detroit is a reality and four world-renowned design firms are making their pitch to revamp West Riverfront Park.

West Riverfront Park is roughly the same size as Brooklyn Bridge Park in New York City. At a cost of about $50 million, the city hopes that a revitalization effort will help bring more people into the city.

Four design firms have submitted their visions for the park but they all have one thing in common: access to the river.

"Folks like having the opportunity to enjoy their waterfront. When you visit the Riverwalk in the summer, you see people out with their families, you see people bringing their friends. This is part of the waterfront where we have the opportunity to expand that. It's a large space - 22 acres - think about how people utilize the riverfront now, think about more space for people to enjoy the water front," Development Planner Ritchie Harrison said.

The vision is for a complete revitalization from 'bridge to bridge' - meaning from the MacArthur Bridge to Belle Isle on the east and the Ambassador Bridge to Canada on the west.  

West Riverfront Park is between the Ambassador Bridge and Joe Louis Arena - and it's the perfect opportunity for redevelopment," Harrison said.

"Publicly accessible green space is a catalyst for many things. It's a catalyst for new experiences that people in Detroit want, that they desire - a place they can visit along the waterfront. I think green space is a sign part of it - you have to have connectivity to the waterfront. That can help catalyze a lot things. We've seen it on the East River Front, we'll certainly see it on the west," he said.

You can weigh in too. The city is hosting a forum where you can review all four plans. CLICK HERE for more information.

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