A revitalized and reimagined riverfront is home to a first-ever downtown Toledo Metropark Middlegrounds offers a perfect respite amid the urban landscape.
Situated along Ottawa Street, nestled near the Anthony Wayne Bridge (aka the High Level Bridge), the newest Metropark allows the bridge’s beautiful framework to serve as a grand entrance to a 28-acre metropark in the middle ground between the Maumee River and Swan Creek, once an epicenter for railroad, shipping and industry. “We removed a thousand tons of debris, and created a park,” states Scott Carpenter, director of public relations for the Metroparks of the Toledo Area.
Naturally and Sustainably Man-made
The smallest of the metroparks, Middlegrounds has the feel of an expansive space graced with a half mile of sparkling Maumee River frontage. Decks and small bridges offer vistas of both the river and surrounding cityscape. Made from sustainable ipe wood, these structures lead over a series of ponds and along a 1.5-mile walking and biking trail (handicapped accessible).
Carpenter highly recommends following the trail to the en. “You can see all three Toledo bridges at once; it’s a really amazing view.” The AW Bridge has been outfitted with a piping system that funnels rainwater runoff through the park’s ponds where native plants and grasses help filter out debris and chemicals before the water flows into the Maumee River. (Look for the pipes coming off the side of the bridge.)
Other features include a dog park and the kayak cove, which provides easy, safe launching in a small protected waterway before leading into the river. A railroad roundhouse, original to the property, was converted for use as a picnic shelter and restroom facilities.
Middlegrounds Metropark at 111 Ottawa St.