Expanded Sims Park Pier and Trails Open to the Public
Mayor Cervenik, members of City Council and guests joined together at 4:00 pm on October 3, 2013 for an historic grand opening and ribbon-cutting event of the first phase of construction related to the Euclid Waterfront Improvements Plan at Sims Park, at 23131 Lake Shore Boulevard, Euclid, Ohio.
This exciting project enhances the Sims Park portion of the lakefront with a new handicap- accessible trail leading to the waterfront and a substantially larger new fishing pier. The pier officially opened to the public for the first time following the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
“This project, along with future phases, will increase public access to the lakefront for the entire region, drawing people to Euclid’s Waterfront District to fish, recreate and enjoy Lake Erie. In fact when the Waterfront Improvements Plan is fully implemented, nearly three-quarters of a mile of the shoreline will be opened up to public access from Sims Park to approximately East 248th Street. We also encourage the lakefront visitors to take advantage of the variety of nearby Downtown Euclid shops and great restaurants, while they are in the area,” stated Mayor Bill Cervenik.
The new pier, which replaces a former pier constructed in the 1970’s, includes a wider deck, a custom designed shade pavilion and a fishing platform protected by a stone breakwall. The extension of the pier nearly doubles its length to reach shoreline waters deep enough to fish. The project also includes specially-designed lower railings to allow handicap-accessible fishing. “Together these improvements offer another option to get to the water’s edge to enjoy one of the City’s greatest assets, Lake Erie. Not only will you be able to fish from the new pier, but this is also one of few locations where you can experience incredible sunsets and views of the Sims Park and the greater Cleveland shoreline, particularly east into Lake County,” said Mayor Bill Cervenik.
The cost for the first phase, including the trail and pier improvements, was approximately $1.7M. Mayor Cervenik and Euclid City Council worked together to develop a funding plan and to pass all legislation needed for the City to bid and award contracts for construction. With support from the State of Ohio, the funding includes grants through the Department of Natural Resources totaling over $350,000. The balance of the cost was covered by City-iissued bonds as part of the City’s Capital Improvement Program.
The trails were constructed by Mr. Excavator, Inc. and the pier was constructed by Huffman Equipment Rental & Contracting, Inc., both local companies awarded contracts for this project through a competitive bidding process. Smith Group JJR, LLC, the City’s waterfront planning consultant, also acted as the consulting engineer on the project. Construction started on this Phase in 2011 with the installation of the new trails and ended late summer 2013 with the completion of the fishing pier and related amenities.
This first phase is part of a larger waterfront plan developed through a public planning process which included significant input from area stakeholders and Euclid residents. The Euclid Waterfront Improvements Plan was adopted by the City as part of its master plan in December of 2009. Engineering design for future phases will get underway this fall. These phases will include additional walking trails in Sims Park connected to a multi-purpose trail and boardwalk along the shoreline; the re-creation of the historic beaches that existed in this area; and a future marina featuring public boat docks and nearby lakefront dining. The planning process and implementation is being guided by a Waterfront Steering Committee, consisting of the Mayor, Council representatives, resident and business representatives, and Cleveland-area development firm, K&D.
Submitted by: Frank Pietravioia, Assistant to the Mayor for Development