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The 1.35 mile-long Chester Riverfront Trail is a great way to experience the Delaware River. Part of an urban renewal project that also includes the adjacent Barry Bridge Park, Subaru Park Stadium and an old power plant that has been renovated and now serves as the corporate headquarters for the Philadelphia Union pro soccer team, the ADA-accessible asphalt trail is suitable for cycling, walking, in-line skating and pushing baby strollers. Opportunities also exist for fishing and observing the various watercraft, ranging from small jet skis, rowboats and motor launches to much larger ocean-going freighters and military ships passing on the Delaware River.
The northeastern segment of the trail passes through Barry Bridge Park and features lush gardens, a small plaza and a walkway along the banks of the Delaware. Sit down on the benches and take in the wide, often swiftly flowing river or gaze up at the massive Commodore Barry Bridge that towers overhead and carries Route 322 between Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
After passing beneath the bridge, the trail curves around the southeast side of Subaru Park Soccer Stadium. Home to the Philadelphia Union Soccer Team, the ultramodern stadium is the centerpiece of the revitalized riverfront, which was once the site of a superfund toxic waste dump that ignited in a major fire back in the 70's. This segment of the trail includes more benches as well as the Subaru Park "Good Garden."
The trail continues southwest of the stadium, winding through the grounds of an old power station that has been restored and repurposed to house the corporate offices for the Union soccer team. Marvel at the ornate, neoclassical architecture on this building, though be careful passing through the arches on the northeast and southwestern sides, where bike racks straddle the middle of the trail. Tugboats and other such craft can often be seen at the small shipyard immediately southwest of the corporate offices, while the team's training center features some colorful murals.
As of 2020, the southwest terminus of the trail is at the end of Highland Ave., immediately northeast of the gate to the Covanta Delaware Valley plant.
Despite its short length, the Chester Riverfront Trail is considered part of the East Coast Greenway, which will also include bike lanes planned for construction along nearby Seaport Drive. The trail has succeeded at reconnecting the city of Chester to its riverfront and represents a triumph of urban renewal over industrial decay.
Parking is available in the large lots for Subaru Park Stadium, located immediately to the northwest on both sides of the Commodore Barry Bridge
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