Saturday, July 2, 2011

First Section of the San Antonio River "Mission Reach" Celebrates its Grand Opening

              Photo: Andrew Buckley/ /

The restoration of the San Antonio River's ecosystem, which encompasses a total of eight miles, remains a work in progress.  But the first two miles of the extension had it's unveiling last week, with work continuing on the last 6 miles, due to be completed in August, 2013.  Saturday was the first time joggers, walkers and cyclists could navigate trails from San Pedro Creek to Mission Road. 

Saturday's ceremony also included the opening of the Mission Concepción portal, a stone masoned archway and trail, the first of four that will link the river to missions Concepción, San José, San Juan Capistrano and Espada. The portals will be opened one by one as the final phases are completed.

Sixty years ago, the river was modified and straightened, becoming a glorified drainage ditch. Now it's beginning to look more like a typical South Texas river, but everything about it is engineered — down to the placement of the 23,000 native trees and shrubs.

To learn more about this local treasure, read Pierre Bertrand's informative article in the San Antonio Express News. 

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