Oh yes, this is sure to ruffle a few feathers.
The iconic Old Sacramento boardwalk, the period-correct, timber-lined path that follows the river, is to be ripped out, and replaced with modern concrete. The project is set to be complete by Thanksgiving of this year, which means it will likely be closed for a significant duration of the summer.
It’s actually only affecting the 3-block section right next to the river, in front of the restaurants, near the Delta King. The boardwalk that’s there was installed in 1986, and due to a recent lawsuit from the Americans With Disabilities Act, and it promises to improve the experience of walking along the river.
We’ve all been there, some of us pushing strollers or even trying to navigate a wheelchair. Yes, there are ramps, but some big chunks of timber are missing, making it difficult for some to push their children in strollers, or even walk in many cases, across the surface. Boards are split, splintered, and bolts are exposed. There have even been cases of people twisting their ankles over some of the boards.
The new plans consist of tearing all the old timber out, forming and pouring concrete in its place. The concrete will actually be colored to look like wood, and it will even have woodgrain stamped across the surface, making it look even more authentic. The concrete will provide a solid, smooth surface that’s easy to walk, push, or maneuver a wheelchair across, allowing many more people the opportunity to see the water.
This still has many people attached to the history of Old Sacramento talking though, saying a modernization of the area ruins the “old timey” feel of the historic area. Others are saying the modernization will make it much more accessible to more tourism. Construction will be done in 6 different sections, and they say no businesses will be impacted by the project, allowing everyone to stay open during the huge tourism season.