New Park & Trailhead will Connect North Montgomery to Riverfront Park via Greenway Thanks to Public-Private Partnership

Mayor Reed unveils new in-process park in north Montgomery and plans for the future of the amphitheater in downtown Montgomery.

The projects were made possible through partnerships and Montgomery Forward, a $50 million investment in infrastructure, community centers, quality of life amenities and public safety facilities throughout the city.

MONTGOMERY – Mayor Steven L. Reed held a press conference Thursday to announce the beginning of several new quality-of-life projects that are part of the Montgomery Forward initiative.

One of these projects is a new river-proximate park in North Montgomery. The Shady Street Trailhead and Park encompass a three-block linear park along Shady Street in Montgomery, north of the Alabama River.

Based on recommendations from the Envision Montgomery 2040 Comprehensive Plan, Montgomery’s first citywide planning document in 60 years, Mayor Reed and Montgomery leaders seek to enhance quality-of-place by developing unique parkland in flood-prone and contiguous forest areas surrounding Montgomery. The City’s Urban Forestry division planted native tree species, including young bald cypress trees. The ultimate goal is to connect this park, once completed, to the Riverfront Trail and add a new greenway in Montgomery – another recommendation from Envision Montgomery 2040.

The project is a partnership between the City of Montgomery and organizations like River Region Trails, Montgomery Rotary, and the Montgomery Lions Club. Mayor Reed allocated $100,000 dollars to this project. Generous sponsorships from Montgomery Rotary and the Montgomery Lions Club helped to fund large portions of the Shady Street Trailhead and Park and the Riverfront Greenway.

Mayor Reed also shared plans for extensive renovations to the amphitheater at Riverfront Park in downtown Montgomery. It will include additions like a children’s playable art area, covered pavilion, state-of-the-art lighting system, new unrestrictive stadium seating that preserves much of the greenspace, and upgrades to the splash pad. The goal is to bring more concert, entertainment, and arts opportunities to the amphitheater. A new restaurant and bar could help the City do just that.

The former Sandbar at Montgomery’s Riverfront Park will be transformed into Red Bluff Bar and operated by Jud Blount, founder and proprietor of Vintage Hospitality Group. The City entered into a lease agreement with Blount and Vintage Hospitality Group, whose portfolio includes Vintage Year, Vintage Café, MGM Greens, and City Fed and Ravello (opening soon). Blount was named Restaurateur of the Year and Executive Chef Eric Rivera was named a finalist by the Alabama Restaurant and Hospitality Association.


More than $50 million is being invested in Montgomery as part of a new City of Montgomery initiative led by Mayor Steven L. Reed to renew neighborhoods, revive infrastructure and build unrivaled facilities throughout the community.

“At its core, Montgomery Forward is meant to drive progress and support all of Montgomery,” Mayor Reed said. “That is a promise we made, and it is a promise we will keep. Whether you live in west, north, south, or east Montgomery, you can expect to see tangible progress and dirt being turned on projects that will help us realize our vision for a more equitable and vibrant community.”

Montgomery Forward funds a litany of long-needed capital improvement projects. It was made possible through Mayor Reed’s restructuring of municipal finances to save $16-$18 million in taxpayer dollars while generating new revenue through sales of municipal bonds in March 2021.

Each Montgomery Forward project site will have branded signage so that the public can see its status. For more information on Montgomery Forward and its projects, please visit