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Environment & Energy

A stretch of the riverfront trail through the Strip District has reopened

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Katie Blackley
/
90.5 WESA
Runners pass by a housing complex under construction in Pittsburgh's Strip District on Thursday, Oct. 7, 2021. This stretch was recently opened after a years-long closure.

Runners, walkers and cyclists can once again use the riverfront trail through most of the Strip District, as the section between 15th and 26th streets has reopened. That part of the trail was closed for a few years due to construction.

Courtney Mahronich, director of development with Friends of the Riverfront, said the stretch is freshly paved and vegetation has been cut back.

“We work with all of the landowners and the City of Pittsburgh to cut back invasive species, cut back vines off trees so the riparian can grow healthy and stabilize.” Mahronich said. (If needed, she said it’s always an option to send in a team of goats, which are often employed to eat invasive plants like Japanese knotweed.)

Friends of the Riverfront, which maintains the trails, is in talks with the railroad company CSX to acquire land that would extend the trail to 33rd Street.

“It was a former rail line that they’re now abandoning, so we’re trying to acquire it as a whole corridor,” Mahronich said. “It’s actually probably the first major expansion of a trail in the city in a really long time. It’s a really big deal to see the trail get such a huge boost to the numbers.”

Later this month, a portion of the trail in Etna will open, connecting the borough to the riverfront.