Southern Portion of Mississippi Riverfront Reopens

Everything you need to know about accessing the Gateway Arch, Riverboats, and Laclede’s Landing during CityArchRiver Construction

The southern portion of Leonor K. Sullivan Boulevard, which runs along the Mississippi River at the base of the Grand Staircase of the Gateway Arch grounds, reopened on January 30, 2015. People can once again explore and enjoy the mighty Mississippi riverfront on the south side of the staircase. The northern section, from the midpoint of the staircase north to Carr Street, closed on the same day. As improvements continue, residents and tourists can visit riverfront attractions, the Arch, Old Courthouse, and the historic Laclede’s Landing throughout the remainder of the CityArchRiver project construction.

Great Rivers Greenway, the regional parks and trails district, began construction on the central riverfront in November 2013 as part of the CityArchRiver project; the roadway is being elevated 2.5 feet to eliminate the majority of flooding occurrences that shut down the riverfront each year. The 1.5-mile stretch will also get more lighting, security, green space and separated biking and accessible walking paths. It will connect to the pathways being built around the perimeter of the Arch grounds, and those sloping downward to the river, offering a more accessible option for people as an alternative to the grand staircase.

“Everyone deserves easy and safe access to our region’s front door,” said Susan Trautman, executive director for Great Rivers Greenway. “It’s exciting to give people opportunities to embrace the river in new ways.”

Trautman reported that contractors are looking forward to finishing the project this fall so people can enjoy the riverfront. Kwame Building Group, the project’s monitoring and reporting
firm, reports that Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) participation is more than 50.5 percent on the $33 million project, with 31.8% being minority-owned (MBE) and 18.7 percent being women-owned (WBE).

Here’s what you need to know about access:
• From downtown, those on foot can get to the Arch grounds and/or riverfront from downtown via the Walnut Street Bridge by the Old Cathedral. Starting Friday, they can travel across the Arch grounds to the south side of the grand staircase, and walk down to the southern cobblestone levee and riverboats
• From the south, cars can access Leonor K. Sullivan Boulevard via Chouteau Avenue, where parking is available on the southern levee. Buses can pull up further to a designated drop off location near the grand staircase. .
• For transit users, take the 8th and Pine stop and follow the directions above on foot for the Arch or riverfront. The Laclede’s Landing MetroLink stop is still available as the best option for going directly to Laclede’s Landing.
• Cars and pedestrians alike can use Convention Plaza or Washington to get to 3rd street north to Laclede’s Landing Boulevard to access the landing.

Complete directions for getting around during Arch grounds improvements (including maps) can be found here. Parking information on the numerous garages downtown that serve the Arch grounds and other downtown attractions can be found here

“The reopening of the southern section of Leonor K. Sullivan is another step toward providing a seamless park experience from downtown to the riverfront,” said Maggie Hales, executive director of the CityArchRiver 2015 Foundation. “This is a goal shared by all of the many partners involved in making the overall CityArchRiver project a reality.”