Yonkers began construction Wednesday on a second phase of a river walk along the Saw Mill River in the city’s downtown.
Construction crews will unearth about 100 feet of the Saw Mill River parallel to North Broadway and create an almost 20,000-square-foot courtyard on the west side of the river.
The $8.3 million project on Mill Street sits next to 29 N. Broadway and it will be accessible to pedestrians from North Broadway as well as from a pedestrian gateway at 24 Warburton Ave.; the city completed the first phase of the river walk in 2011.
The new Mill Street Courtyard is modeled after a type of vehicular-pedestrian street found in The Netherlands and called a woonerf, said Jan Saltiel Rafel of Edgewater Design, the Millburn, N.J.-based firm that designed it.
Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said at a ground-breaking event Wednesday that the second phase of the river walk just steps from Getty Square will energize redevelopment in the city’s core.
That redevelopment is already underway.
The owner of 2 Mill St. and 13 Main St. has already been approved for more than 20 apartments with a small plaza that will be adjacent to the courtyard and a building permit has been filed with the city, said the project’s architect Gary David Warshauer of WMW Architects.
The owner of 2 Mill St. and 13 Main St., Nick Sprayregen, also plans a 230-unit apartment building at 27 Main St.
Phase II got $920,000 from the New York Environmental Facilities Corporation and $5.4 million from the Empire State Development’s Restore NY program.
The city also used money from the $8 million grant it received for Phase III of the river walk at New Main Street and Chicken Island.