Niles physician donates land for riverfront walkway

By Staff
NILES -- The Lakeland Health Foundation, Niles, the Downtown Development Authority and the City of Niles are one step closer to paving the way to a healthier future for the Niles community, thanks to a generous donation from Douglas Huggett, D.O., of Cardiology Southwest.
Huggett recently donated 1.05 acres of land along the west bank of the St. Joseph river front in Niles to Lakeland Hospital.
This donation will allow for a recreational walkway to be created along the west bank of the river.
The new walkway will ultimately be connected to the existing east bank walkway via the Main Street bridge to the North and the Broadway Street bridge to the South.
The West Bank Riverfront Enhancement Project is a joint venture between the City of Niles, the Downtown Development Authority and the Lakeland Health Foundation, Niles.
Plans are currently under way to develop the walkway in six phases. Phase one of the pathway is set to include a patio area with built-in seating that overlooks the St. Joseph river, and a brick walkway in which Lakeland associates will have the opportunity to purchase a commemorative brick that can be inscribed with the names of the people who mean most to them.
The remainder of the phases will include amenities such as a gazebo, scenic outlook area and built-in seating, as well as a boardwalk style recreational pathway that will connect the new walkway to the existing east bank walkway via the Main Street and Broadway Street bridges.
The estimated cost of the west bank riverfront pathway ranges between $350,000 to $400,000.
The West Bank Riverfront Enhancement project is a collaborative effort between the Niles Health Foundation and the community that will take several years to complete.
For information on how you can become involved in this important community initiative, call the Lakeland Health Foundation, Niles at (269) 687-1401.

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