GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — After 14 years of planning, work has officially begun on the Lyon Square renovation in downtown Grand Rapids.

Local leaders held a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday morning between the Amway hotel and the performance hall. Over the next year, the turnaround will transform into a green event space filled with trees, walking and bike paths, twinkle lights and outdoor firepits.

“The rapids are a namesake for the community, and we see it as our opportunity to really separate Grand Rapids from the rest of the state, if not the country. And so we really want to take advantage of it, and these projects are all part of that,” Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. President Tim Kelly said.

The renovation is part of a public-private partnership that will cost roughly $10 million.

“This project is just the first of many that will help us to reimagine our community, reimagine our skyline,” City Manager Mark Washington said. “With the amphitheater coming in as well as other future development projects, this is a very exciting time for our city.”

Another groundbreaking is scheduled for next week as the Grand Rapids Public Museum joins the revitalization projects.

While some of the larger projects may take years to complete, the goal of these developments is to connect the entire city to the waterfront.

“All these spaces will be connected by a trail getting people to the river and hopefully giving people the opportunity to enjoy our riverfront,” Kelly said.