Great Northern Greenway River Link

RiverFirst Signature Project

Grand Opening Anticipated Summer 2020

The River Link/26th Ave N Overlook project is located at the east end of the 26th Ave N bike and pedestrian trail, a recently completed project that connects the Grand Rounds at Theodore Wirth Regional Park with the Mississippi River through the heart of North Minneapolis. It is the western segment of the future Great Northern Greenway, a cross-Minneapolis trail network that will connect North and Northeast Minneapolis across the river.

The River Link project will celebrate the Greenway’s arrival at the river with a small but compelling public space that now is an unsightly and inaccessible dead-end street, where dense vegetation and a chain link fence blocks the river. The River Link project is a major step in transforming the entire river corridor through North Minneapolis into public parkland, parkway, and trails.

In October 2019, a design team was selected to execute the first phase of the River Link/Overlook project. The project scope for this phase includes shoreline rehabilitation and a river overlook with inventive approaches to lighting, furniture, and art.

Project Partners

Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board and Minneapolis Parks Foundation

Design Team

Project Leads: TEN x TEN Landscape Architecture and 4RM+ULA Architecture
With: EOR, Schuler Shook, Mattson MacDonald Young, MEP, and CPMI

Key Milestones

2019 – Design and engagement continue; project out for bid
2020 – Groundbreaking and grand opening of Overlook Phase

Project Phasing

The River Link is expected to be developed in three phases, beginning with the creation of the 26th Ave N Overlook in 2019-2020. Future development envisions a trail connection to Ole Olson Park and the Grand Rounds trails on W River Road to the south of the overlook. Additionally, the vision is to complete the cross-Minneapolis Great Northern Greenway with a trail across the BNSF bridge.

Linked Public Assets

  • Farview and Ole Olson Parks
  • Grand Rounds National Byway
  • Mississippi National River & Recreation Area
  • Mississippi River National Trail
  • Nellie Stone Johnson School
  • Regional trail network

Related Projects

Water Works
26th Ave N Renovation (City of Mpls)

Featured Images: Overlook renderings and context map by 10×10; River Link/Ole Olson concept by TLS