NORFOLK, Va. – (December 2021) The Elizabeth River Trail Foundation is pleased to announce that contractors broke ground on construction projects to improve the Jeff Robertson Park trailhead along the Elizabeth River Trail. The first improvement is the Parkour course, a fun and challenging play experience for kids of all ages, which is already ready for play.
This course features inclines, twists and vertical mesh nets, which will challenge climbing and crawling skills helping children with coordination and balance. The equipment is provided by KOMPAN that also provided the play and obstacle course equipment at the Plum Point Park trailhead. Parkour courses have roots in military training and martial arts, but stem from a practice of seeing one's environment in a new way. The funds for this course were obtained in part from a Norfolk Southern Foundation Grant and contributions to the capital campaign.
The Parkour Course is situated in a wide open space under a huge shade canopy, which will be ideal for long summer days of play.
“We're so excited to have this amenity as part of the Elizabeth River Trail,” said ERT Executive Director Kindra Greene. “Plans to transform Jeff Robertson Park have been months in the making, and this first phase will make an immediate impact to the children in the neighborhood. Creating these opportunities for play, exploration and strength building at an early age is critical to fostering a love for outdoor recreation. We hope that Jeff Robertson Park will continue to serve as a gateway to other parts of the trail.”
Additional plans for the Jeff Robertson Park improvements include a trailhead shelter, hydration stations and the installation of the Glowline, an 800-foot luminous path that wraps around the northwest playing fields of the park. Once installed, this path will be the first-of-its kind on the East Coast and will bring light to one of the least illuminated sections of the trail.
The Elizabeth River Trail Foundation’s mission is to promote, enhance and transform the Elizabeth River Trail into the most iconic urban riverfront trail in the country. The ERT runs 10.5 miles and connects businesses, historic attractions and 28 neighborhoods within a five-minute walk. The multi-use trail is designed for walking, running and biking. It comprises 11 sections and 11 trailheads from Norfolk State University to NIT Terminals along the Elizabeth River. Highlights include Harbor Park, Downtown Norfolk, Freemason Historic District, Sentara campus, Fort Norfolk, Chelsea, West Ghent, Lambert’s Point, Old Dominion University, Larchmont and Lochhaven. In 2018, the ERT Foundation launched a $4 million comprehensive capital campaign to raise funds to activate and enhance the 10.5-mile trail. It successfully achieved the goal in 2020. Major sponsors include Sentara and the City of Norfolk. For more information, visit www.elizabethrivertrail.org.