TOPSHAM — The Androscoggin Brunswick-Topsham Riverwalk Advisory Committee will celebrate the opening of the Mill Road and Summer Street sidewalk segment of the Androscoggin Brunswick-Topsham Riverwalk at 5 p.m. Monday, Oct. 15.
Dan Stewart, Maine Department of Transportation statewide bicycle, pedestrian, program manager, will speak about the importance of community projects such as the Riverwalk. As a planner within the Bureau of Transportation Systems Planning, Stewart works with communities throughout the state on infrastructure, planning and economic development initiatives to improve conditions and safe access for pedestrians and bicyclists, and improvements to the quality of the community environment.
Also attending the event will be representatives of the Topsham Heights Franco-American community, former millworkers who traveled between Topsham and Brunswick on the Swinging Bridge, and who will cut the ceremonial ribbon. And, the celebrated Woodside One Wheelers will perform on a variety of unicycles.
This phase of the Riverwalk links the historic Swinging Bridge to the sidewalk on Summer Street with a paved path that winds through the woods along the Topsham bank of the Androscoggin River. It brings the project closer to meeting its objective of creating a safe, fully-accessible, four-season 1.25-mile loop path on both sides of the river between the Frank J. Wood (“Green”) Bridge and the Swinging Bridge.
Future phases include building a bicycle and pedestrian path on Mill Street in Brunswick, close to the river’s edge and separated from Route 1 traffic by a sturdy guardrail; improving the route along Maine, Cabot and Bow Streets adjacent to Fort Andross; and creating a park and overlook at the Priority Business Center in Topsham.
The design for the Riverwalk was created by Anthony Muench, Landscape Architect, in consultation with the Advisory Committee and municipal officials from both Topsham and Brunswick. In-kind technical support was provided by the National Park Service Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program. Davis Conservation Fund awarded a $25,000 grant to the project in 2010.