Transforming the James River in Richmond

Time Period
1925 to Today
Media Type
Geography & Environment
Ralph Hambrick

The James River has always been the centerpiece of Richmond, but by the mid-twentieth century it had been abused and neglected. Today, the river draws visitors to its wooded shorelines, restored canal, and feisty rapids. At the local level, this transformation was the result of citizen action, public-private partnerships, difficult decisions by governmental leaders, and the hard work of thousands of advocates and volunteers. Local author Ralph Hambrick chronicles the events, projects, and controversies that brought about the dramatic change.

Ralph Hambrick, professor emeritus in public policy and administration at Virginia Commonwealth University, is a member and former chair of the Falls of the James Scenic River Advisory Committee and a member and former co-chair of the James River Advisory Council. He is a former whitewater canoe instructor, raft guide and an all-around river enjoyer who does his writing from a home office overlooking the James River. He is the author of Transforming the James River in Richmond.

The content and opinions expressed in these presentations are solely those of the speaker and not necessarily of the Virginia Museum of History & Culture.

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