Returning to the river
Brainerd may be on the verge of rediscovering the great natural resource that led to the city being established in the first place — the Mississippi River.
The Brainerd City Council is looking for applicants for a steering committee that will draft a riverfront development plan that may include a river walk.
America’s greatest river has been a long-neglected attribute in the city that owes it location to the fact that it had a favorable crossing point for the railroad, just south of what is now Washington St.
Signs of life along the riverfront, south of downtown Brainerd, include the opening of the Buffalo Hills Trail and the Brainerd Rotary Club’s 37-acre passive park. The trail, which officially opened last September, includes a 2.15-mile paved segment that connects Buffalo Hills Park (on Buffalo Hills Lane) in south Brainerd to Kiwanis Park, which is nestled between Boom Lake and the Mississippi River. Families, bicyclists, hikers have already discovered the beauty of this trail, which includes a 72 foot change in elevation from Buffalo Hills Park to the river. The new park, using land purchased by the Brainerd Rotary Club, will be used for walking and bird-watching, instead of activities that would require development and possibly maintenance.
The city will accept applications for the steering committee until Feb. 21. If you have ideas about how we can best use this undeveloped land along the Mississippi River, don’t hesitate to step up and share your ideas with others.