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'CoveWalk' in New Bedford offers stunning views of harbor

A multimillion dollar public beautification project is ready for use in New Bedford. (WJAR)

A multimillion dollar public beautification project is ready for use in New Bedford.

The new 5,500-foot CoveWalk runs along the top of the hurricane barrier on the west side of the South End peninsula and offers stunning views of the harbor.

"The whole idea is part of a bigger strategy in investing in the peninsula," said Mayor Jon Mitchell. "This part of the city which has tremendous value."

The mayor has invested a lot of public funding to that part of the city, and now, with $5 million of state grant funding, the CoveWalk is a reality for those who want to exercise, take the family out, or walk the dog.

"The opportunity it gave all of us to kind of give the waterfront back to the folks in this neighborhood and the folks of this community is the part that made this especially important to all of us," said Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, who was on hand at a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday afternoon.

Along with the obvious aesthetic impact the walkway will have on the city, it brings structural benefits, as well.

To build it, 13 inches of reinforced concrete was poured on top of the hurricane barrier. The Army Corps of Engineers said that makes the barrier stronger and more formidable.

"This is a great example of taking a piece of infrastructure -- a critically important piece of infrastructure -- and giving it more than one purpose," Massachusetts Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack said.

The CoveWalk stretches longer than the 3,400-foot HarborWalk on the east side of the peninsula.

Residents, as well as other elected officials, told NBC 10 News they are enjoying the views and beauty it adds to that part of the city.

"We're a working-class city and we deserve nice things," said Councilor At-Large Ian Abreu. "Nice things aren't reserved only for affluent communities. This is a long time coming. It's beautiful and we're happy to have it."

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