Watertown explores ways to use Black River to attract people to the city

How to make best use of the Black River
Published: Apr. 26, 2023 at 5:57 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - The Black River is one of the more underutilized assets in the city of Watertown. Monday night, city staff brought a list of ideas to a city council work session for drawing people to the river.

Some of those ideas included improving waterfront access and public spaces like fishing spots.

City staff said docks, restaurants and housing along the river could increase Watertown’s population and attract tourists.

They pointed to Maggie’s on the River as an example for future development.

Planning director Mike Lumbis says people in the private sector interested in investing on the river want to see the city invest first.

“They wanted to see some commitment by the city to make that first move to start to develop things before they came here to spend their money,” Lumbis said. “We’re starting some of that with the development of the trail.”

Also in the work session, Zoo New York staff told the city council that strategies are needed to keep the zoo vital and attractive to the public.

Director Larry Sorel says he would like to form a panel or committee to come up with a plan for the zoo’s future.