Today’s announcement of the planned Moon River Canoe Launch on the Cahaba River is a major step forward for the Cahaba River Blueway, which was supported last year by the Community Foundation. This unique collaboration among the Cahaba River Society, the Nature Conservancy of Alabama and the Alabama Innovation Engine aims to implement a series of access points along the Cahaba River that draw visitors through low-impact public recreation sites and artful signage to explore not only the river, but also historical and cultural amenities in the communities through which the Blueway passes.
The Community Foundation’s multi-year award of $125,000 supports the planning and design of the Blueway, as well as a development of the first model access point along the Blueway. The Moon River Canoe Launch site represents an enhancement to the original plan and was made possible through cooperation of the Freshwater Land Trust, which owns the land on U.S. 78 between Irondale and Leeds where the canoe launch is planned. This newly announced access point promises to draw outdoor enthusiasts, and also will tie into the Red Rock Ridge and Valley Trail System currently under construction throughout Jefferson County.
“Our grant for the design and development of the Cahaba River Blueway made sense not only because it encourages responsible use of one of our region’s ecological gems, the Cahaba River, but it also engages communities all along the river in the planning,” said Gus Heard-Hughes, Director of Initiatives for the Community Foundation. “Today’s announcement reinforces that the Blueway project is fostering cooperation and collaboration, and we applaud all the partners, including the cities of Irondale and Leeds, for coming together to make this additional access point a reality.”