Follow Inwood’s path to the river

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Our good neighbors to the south, in Inwood, may well have shown us a path out of the wilderness, and it’s a riverfront path at that.

More than a year ago, supporters of Hudson River access in Riverdale were heartened by an infusion of federal planning money, courtesy of Sen. Chuck Schumer, only to have their hopes dashed when the results of the well-meaning but overblown planning efforts were revealed. 

The Greenway the planners proposed was, for the most part, nowhere near the river and required millions of dollars worth of major road and bridge engineering work to connect it to Manhattan.

After much Sturm und Drang at community board meetings last spring, planners were sent back to the drawing board. 

Now they have an example to follow.

An Aug. 14 article in The New York Times, “New Trail Along the Hudson Goes Only So Far,” describes a Greenway in Inwood that not only fails to link up with the Bronx; it doesn’t even link with the waterfront trail further south in Manhattan.

Nevertheless, residents are thrilled. As The Times put it, “It may be a path to nowhere. But in a city whose denizens rush from Point A to Point B, the surroundings make up for the lack of a destination.”

Without a need for a destination, the Parks Department can begin almost immediately to greatly enlarge the tiny park near Metro-North’s Riverdale Station, creating a walkway as far north as the College of Mount St. Vincent and, if a single, narrow lane is sufficient, along the railroad tracks as far south as the Spuyten Duyvil triangle.

It would still be nice to have a way, down by the water, to get to Manhattan by foot or by bicycle and it would be nice if Metro-North were to share a bit of its landward real estate to make it easier to build the path, but the perfect shouldn’t be the enemy of the good.

Let’s demand of the city that we be given the same “path to nowhere” that Inwood is now enjoying.

One way to show your support, and have fun doing it, would be to come to the Kingsbridge Riverdale Van Cortlandt Development Corporation’s Greenway Gala on the campus of the Hebrew Home for the Aged on Sunday, Oct. 19.

In addition to a lively dinner party, KRVC is offering hot air balloon rides  which promise to offer spectacular bird’s eye views of the Palisades in all their fall foliage. Don’t miss out.

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