Francis J. Farren Redevelopment Area 92/365 Things to Do
I just named it after my Dad, because I never was able to find an official name for this little path that we used to go walking on in the mornings for a few years.
This would be the second stop if you were to park at the Airport parking lot, which is also the designated parking area for The Gordon River Greenway park. The bike path runs past the Airport Observation Deck around the west side of the runways and then back East back towards the airport. The path crosses the road just after it comes out of the curve, so use caution, and then is basically a wide spot in the road until you get to the South pedestrian entrance into the Redevelopment Area.
The asphalt path includes about a 2,000 foot loop around a retention area and pond, with a wooden bridge that crosses the pond. There is a shaded area with a bench at the end of the bridge where you can observe which way the tide is flowing, as the pond connects to The Gordon River which flows out through Naples Bay and into The Gulf of Mexico. There are a couple of other benches along the path, but other than that, there are no amenities: No water, restrooms, picnic tables, or even trash cans, so pack out whatever you pack in. I used to see a lot of dog poop, so I guess it’s pet friendly, but since there are no trash cans, maybe I shouldn’t say that.
There is a handicapped only parking area at 485 North Road with 4 parking spots.
The newest thing about this park, is that they just completed a bridge over the Gordon River that connects to Baker Park that opened in March, 2019. The bridge takes you high over the river, so you get a nice breeze and views. The path goes around Baker Park, and if you follow it straight, it ends right at Central and Goodlette-Frank, so about another mile West and you’ll be at the beach and close to downtown. Pretty cool stuff!
About the author - John Farren is a resident of Naples, Florida and an avid kayaker.