From the desk of Casey Wells, Erie Events Executive Director:
The City of Erie Zoning Hearing Board rightly affirmed the determination of the City Zoning Officer on the Erie County Convention Center Authority’s (ECCCA) Bayfront Place design as fully compliant with all waterfront zoning regulations. The ECCCA provided an uninterrupted 1100’ long, 12-14’ wide asphalt pathway for the entire length of the property. This alone, satisfies zoning requirements.
To further enhance the walkway, the ECCCA built a second walkway, nearer to the waters edge, ranging from 6’ to 30’ in width constructed of scribed concrete, imbedded stones and decorative concrete pavers. An assortment of ornamental grasses, lilies and other plantings separate the two pathways. This allows for a soft buffer in between those enjoying more active recreational pursuits and those interested in more passive use. The smaller pathway intentionally does not extend to the top of the sea wall in all locations which eliminates the need for a 42” safety railing. This allows visitors to enjoy the view of Erie’s magnificent Presque Isle Bay without obstructions. Park benches, trash cans, pet potty stations, fishing pods and safety ladders are also available to better meet the needs of citizens visiting the waterfront. Finally, the ECCCA also included a 20 foot swath of turf grass and trees to complete a richly designed waterfront parkway.
Although the property provides areas for fishing, it is not only for fisherman. It is a waterfront parkway that encourages both active and passive recreational uses for all the residents of our region, including fisherman, runners, walkers, bicyclists and those who simply want to sit on a bench and enjoy an unobstructed sunset over our beautiful waterfront.
It is now open to the public, but only accessible from the western entrance due to construction activities near the Convention Center. I hope you are able to visit and trust you will enjoy your new waterfront parkway.