The section of Riverwalk Trail that extends from behind Thrifty Tire on Riverside Drive to behind Dan River Church recently received the designation of “Virginia Treasure” by Governor Terry McAullife as a part of a Department of Conservation and Recreation initiative.
“For centuries and around the world, our Commonwealth has been known for the beauty of our environment and for the rich diversity found in our forests, wetlands, streams and fields,” Gov. McAullife stated in a letter to Danville Parks and Recreation. “These treasures benefit all Virginians and are economic and environmental assets. Most importantly, they are a huge part of our culture.”
McAullife’s administration has set a goal of identifying, protecting and preserving at least 1,000 Treasures throughout the commonwealth. Designees include natural, cultural and recreational treasures as well as land conservation treasures. According to the initiative’s web page, 306 designations have been made.
“Designations like these mean a lot for Danville, our community and our department,” said Danville Parks and Recreation Director Bill Sgrinia. “The trail only compliments a beautiful asset on which our community was built. We hope by our continued dedication to the Riverwalk trail, we can provide access to the Dan River in a way that not only conserves the natural surroundings but educates our community on the importance of preserving waterways and surrounding habitats.”
According to the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s web site, facilities such as the most recent Riverwalk Trail section, which opened in the fall of 2014, provide new public access to a natural, cultural or scenic outdoor recreation resource.
“These are projects that help the public by enhancing outdoor recreation and foster stewardship of natural and cultural resources. Emphasis is on ventures that meet the public’s most needed outdoor recreation offerings. Treasures are added when they are opened to the public.”
The Riverwalk Trail Section, known as Riverwalk-Riverside Drive Phase II, joins the ranks of other designees including Tobacco Heritage Trail in Southern Virginia, Pitts Landing Boat Ramp in Accomack County and a canoe access point at Crow’s Nest Natural Area Preserve in Stafford County.
For more information on the initiative, visit www.DCR.Virginia.gov/Virginia-Treasures.