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Posted In: Greenways

Wrecking Ball, Meet Lehigh Cement Silos

Justin Doyle

August 13, 2015 9:26am
This pic, courtesy of WTVR.com, shows the wrecking ball hammering the silos yesterday.

This pic, courtesy of WTVR.com, shows the wrecking ball hammering the silos yesterday.

The Richmond Riverfront Plan was adopted by City Council in 2012. Fast-forward nearly three years later and BOOM! The Lehigh Cement silos are coming down, creating a blank canvass for a new 1.5-acre public riverfront space that accommodates the Virginia Capital Trail, improves access to the James River, and eliminates a visual obstruction from Libby Hill.

Progress is not always tangible or visible, especially when implementing an ambitious plan like the one for Richmond’s riverfront. For those who have worked largely behind the scenes to support implementation of the Riverfront Plan, yesterday was a symbolic milestone to celebrate. It marked the beginning of physical implementation. Representatives from the James River Association, Virginia Capital Trail Foundation, Venture Richmond, and Scenic Virginia, supporters of plan implementation, were present to hear Mayor Jones comment on the occasion and witness a wrecking ball begin demolishing the silos. The demolition of the silos is expected to be complete by the end of August.

This satellite image shows the silos in the bottom right corner.

This satellite image shows the silos in the bottom right corner near where Ash and Dock streets come together. The Virginia Capital Trail runs between the silos and the river.

Our riverfront is changing for the better. It is becoming more accessible and accommodating. Numerous transformational riverfront projects are underway or will be underway in the near future including the Low Line and highly anticipated T. Tyler Potterfield Memorial Bridge. With Stone Brewing Co. scheduled to open a bistro in the Intermediate Terminal building in the coming years, the riverfront will be much different than it is today. Needless to say, it is an exciting time to be a Richmonder.

About Justin Doyle

Justin's passion for conservation began at a young age. He grew up in a suburb of Washington, D.C., where he witnessed the rapid conversion of fields and forests to sprawling residential and commercial development. He pursued a career in conservation to protect precious natural resources like the James River and joined the James River Association in April 2013. Before joining the JRA he received a BaA degree in Geography from the University of Mary Washington, a Master of Urban & Regional Planning degree from Virginia Commonwealth, and spent five years working as a planner in Henrico County. He is a 2015 Fellow of the Virginia Natural Resources Leadership Institute, serves on the Falls of the James Scenic Advisory Committee, and represents the JRA on the James River Advisory Council. He currently resides in Richmond with his wife and dog, Henry. In his spare time Justin enjoys exploring the James River on his kayak, traveling, gardening, hiking, cycling, and snow skiing.