The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is helping expand a major recreational area in Philadelphia.

Gov. Tom Wolf came to the city Monday with a promise of $3 million to help expand the Schuylkill River trail. The trail, which enhanced recreational opportunities, makes the river a good place for business and housing expansion, he said.

"It's not just a bike path, it's a place to walk, enjoy nature, enjoy the beauty that we have not enjoyed in Philadelphia for far too long," the governor said.

Philadelphia Managing Director Mike DiBerardinis said the funds will help extend the trail into Southwest Philadelphia.

"The Bartram's mile, which is about a $7 million trail plan, brings the trail along the river," he said. "And then there's a section that connects into Southwest Philadelphia below Bartram's."

The money will be used to buy property needed to extend the trail. 

After the news conference, the governor and other officials got onto bicycles for a spin along the trail.

Officials say the riverside trail hosts 29,000 visitors a week, or about 1.5 million people a year.

Cindy Dunn, secretary of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, said the trail may one day connect Philadelphia with Reading in eastern Pennsylvania.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.