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This Saturday morning, The Trail Foundation and the City of Austin will celebrate the grand opening of the Boardwalk Trail at Lady Bird Lake. After nearly two years of build-up and construction, the 1.1-mile addition to the trail will be officially open to the public at 10 a.m. on June 7th, closing the southeastern gap of the 10 mile loop around the lake. Currently, anywhere from 3,000 to 15,000 people use the Trail every day and because of the gap and the inconvenient diversion along Riverside Drive, 20 times more people use the west end loop than the east.
Construction on the $27 million project began in October 2012, starting at the eastern end of the lake in International Shores Park, and running over land and water to get to the current end of the trail by the Austin American-Statesman building. The trail features a 14-foot-wide concrete path, more than 13,000 LED lights, multiple piers and landings, and breathtaking views of downtown Austin that are currently only available from boats and canoes. The trail also showcases a creek that many Austinites haven’t even heard of, Harper’s Branch Creek.
The Grand Opening festivities begin at 10 a.m. and include children’s activities, live music from SoundWaves, a festive march across the Boardwalk led by the Eastside Panther Drumline, and an aerial dance performance under I-35 by Blue Lapis Light.