The first phase of creating Tuscaloosa's Northern Riverwalk is officially underway after a virtual groundbreaking to celebrate the beginning of the much-anticipated project.

Construction on the project began on February 8 and is expected to wrap up sometime this summer. Future plans for the Northern Riverwalk include the construction of a park, trailhead, recreational path, playground, pavilion and parking area.

Phase one of the project begins east of McFarland Boulevard (near the Woolsey-Finnell Bridge) and will continue for approximately 3,000 feet (.57 miles) to the east.

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“We have seen on the southern side of the river just what the Riverwalk can mean to our community,” Mayor Walt Maddox said. “If you drive down Jack Warner Parkway, you’ll see families out there walking, people jogging, and students stringing up hammocks. To me, that’s part of what makes a great city. And now, we’re going to be able to do that on the north side of the river as well.”

“The Northern Riverwalk is a project that I hold near and dear to my heart,” said Cynthia Almond, city council president. “It will be a beautiful addition to Tuscaloosa.”

The ability to begin development of the Northern Riverwalk project is due in large part to the generous donation of a 19-acre plot of land from the Randall family, which was valued at $2.72 million.

“Our family is so happy to be able to do this,” Frank Randall said. “To give back to the City, and provide a place where families can go and have fun, and be in nature. That’s really important to us, and I know it would mean a lot to my dad as well.”

Mayor Walt Maddox thanked the Randall family for their generous donation, which helped move Northern Riverwalk plans forward.

“Another part of what makes this community great is the people who live in it,” Maddox added. “On behalf of the City, to the entire Randall family, thank you for your generosity.”

For more information about the Northern Riverwalk project click here.

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