Breeze Point Landing. File photo by Brian Hagberg.

City of Warren Officials Lay Out Next Steps in Riverfront Development Project

February 27, 2024

WARREN, Pa. – Citing an effort that has gone back many years, City of Warren officials held a public engagement session on Monday, detailing the efforts regarding the transformation of Warren’s downtown riverfront.

The design has changed slightly, from a ramp to what is now being labeled a new river access point for watercraft that will accommodate both motorized and non-motorized forms of watercraft.

The location will remain at the base of Liberty St.

“The proposed concept provides multiple access points, including one ramp for small watercraft,” said City Engineer Chad Yurisic. “There will also be a set of rock steps that can be accessed from the gazebo and another set of rock steps at the vacant parcel at the base of Liberty St.”

The change was prompted by a survey, which revealed the presence of mussels in the river, which meant that the project could not use as much of the river as they initially thought.

“We had to adapt the concept,” Yurisic said. “The new concept will be constructed without having to encroach the riverbed.”

A total of $3 million has been earmarked from the project, coming from various sources, the largest of which are Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program and American Rescue Plan Act funds.

“We’re going to continue fundraising,” Yurisic said. “We’re also entering the final design phase. There will be a 30-day public comment period beginning on March 27 to seek shareholder input. We’ve prepared a public comment form that the public can fill out to provide feedback to the city.”

Yurisic also laid out the projected timeline for the project, which is expected to be done in 2026.

“We’ll have the final design April 1 of this year and have all permits secured and in hand by April of 2025,” he said. “Construction will begin in September of 2025 to August of 2026. By the time the project is awarded, there’s not going to be much left of the construction season. The bulk of the work is going to be done in 2026. We’ve conservatively estimated a year for completion, but it could be less than that.”

City of Warren Mayor Dave Wortman emphasized that this is a project that has been years in the making.

“This has been an effort that goes back many years,” Wortman said. “There have probably been nine different iterations as a part of other projects and as a standalone project itself. I think the first goes back to 2008. There are all kinds of folks over the course of the years that have been directly and indirectly involved with this project.”

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