Last fall the Great Rivers Greenway District concluded a $4 million beautification project along the River Des Peres in south St. Louis that brought with it a new pedestrian bridge, four miles of hike-and-bike trails and thousands of new trees. If Great Rivers can transform a drainage ditch into an urban oasis, imagine what the agency can do for the downtown riverfront and planned Chouteau's Pond. Established in November 2000 and funded by a one-tenth-of-one-cent sales tax in St. Louis and in St. Charles and St. Louis Counties, Great Rivers Greenway works for a clean, green, connected St. Louis region. The agency is spearheading the development of the River Ring, an interconnected system of greenways, parks and trails that will encircle the St. Louis region, enhancing the quality of life for residents and visitors. Eventually the Ring will comprise a 600-mile web of more than 45 greenways crisscrossing the region and providing access to trail and greenway projects developed by the Metro East Park and Recreation District in Madison and St. Clair Counties in Illinois.