Mayor Lovely Warren joined state and local officials Thursday to break ground for a ROC the Riverway project at the Rundel Memorial Library.
The $8.1 million North Terrace initiative is one of 30 projects planned for both shores of the Genesee River.
Warren said the overall initiative is an effort to help unify the city.
“ROC the Riverway is bringing our city together around our most precious asset, the mighty Genesee River,” she said.
Library director Patricia Uttaro said the construction of the terrace will open up opportunities for more outdoor programming.
“There will be an overlook onto the river that will include stadium-style seating so we’ll be able to produce programs out here," she said.
A Gallup poll released in January showed that trips to public libraries across the country outnumbered visits to movie theaters and sporting events in 2019. Uttero said those statistics hold up in Rochester.
She said that each year, about 600,000 people visit the Central Library, while over a million visit Rochester public libraries.
“I fully expect that when this project is finished, we will see those numbers go up, and we welcome that," Uttero said. "We’re really looking forward to having that happen.”
Six more ROC the Riverway projects are planned for the summer.