RDG in the Media: Greenway Updates in Downtown Grand Forks, North Dakota

February 26, 2024
Urban Planning Urban Design

The Grand Forks Herald spoke with RDG's Bruce Niedermyer, PLA, ASLA, LEED AP, to discuss proposed enhancements to one of the city's landmark community assets.

For more than 25 years, the Greenway has been at the heart of Grand Forks, North Dakota. Representing approximately 2,200 acres of natural open space, the year-round recreation area features several parks, a campground, two golf courses, three disc golf courses, more than 20 miles of multi-purpose trails and shore bank fishing sites. Over the decades, it’s also experienced the wear and tear that comes with severe weather and flooding, prompting the city to consider what steps it could take to bolster sections of the Greenway and better protect it from ongoing environmental impacts. 

In 2023, the city, along with local event planners, the Downtown Development Association and RDG Planning & Design, presented the Grand Forks Downtown Action Plan, which included efforts to enhance and modernize the Greenway. 

A key objective of the plan is to revitalize the Community Green, an area frequently impacted by annual flooding. The master plan proposes several options and ideas for transformation, including the construction of an amphitheater, enhancements to the parking area to potentially accommodate the farmer's market and the creation of a pedestrian bridge over the river using the old railway alignment.

"[The pedestrian bridge] is a big item that would forever change this zone," said RDG Partner and Landscape Architect Bruce Niedermyer, PLA, ASLA, LEED AP. “Obviously, all of [these ideas] take a lot of coordination with the Army Corps of Engineers. We've had preliminary conversations about all those things, and there's really nothing out of the realm of possibility at this time."

The proposed enhancements are designed to boost connectivity within the Greenway, offering pedestrians increased access and new ways to enjoy the area for years to come.

For more insights into this project, read the full article in The Grand Forks Herald.

Written by Erin Van Zee, Communications Director