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home : news : greenwood May 26, 2017

Carolina Health

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4/8/2013 8:54:00 PM
City Council hears Grace Street park proposal
Architect Steve Dorn, left, presents a preliminary master plan for the proposed Grace Street park project as Greenwood City Council members Ronnie Ables, center, and Johnny Williams listen attentively.
+ click to enlarge
Architect Steve Dorn, left, presents a preliminary master plan for the proposed Grace Street park project as Greenwood City Council members Ronnie Ables, center, and Johnny Williams listen attentively.
Greenwood Mayor Welborn Adams, right, and City Council member Kenn Wiltshire discuss an issue during Monday night's work session.
+ click to enlarge
Greenwood Mayor Welborn Adams, right, and City Council member Kenn Wiltshire discuss an issue during Monday night's work session.
Rick Hendricks
Community Reporter

GREENWOOD — The Grace Street park project, which has been at the center of much debate in recent years, is beginning to take shape and a group of concerned citizens appeared at City Council’s work session Monday to make a presentation.

Billy Nicholson, president of the Greater Greenwood Parks and Trails Foundation, said his group wanted to present a “preliminary” master plan to council on developing the 54 acres previously known as the Commission of Public Works Waste Treatment Plant at the corner of Grace Street and the S.C. 72 bypass.

Nicholson said development of the plan has been an entirely volunteer effort. Once the group receives council’s endorsement, he said a public meeting would take place to get input from residents.

Architect Steve Dorn presented the plan to council and outlined the park’s features, which would include: retaining the existing upper pond with site improvements to enhance the shoreline, a natural stream with waterfalls, boulders and foot bridges, a small children playground and an adjacent larger child playground that would feature swings, monkey bars, slides, etc., a large fenced play and exercise area for unleashed dogs, covered shelters with restrooms for family, club and other group gatherings, outdoor fitness equipment, picnic areas, amphitheater, informal and formal botanical gardens, walking trails, hard-surfaced open plaza for food and beverage vendors, activities and seating and parking.

“It is intended to be a natural park,” Dorn told council.

No cost estimates for the project have yet been done, he said.

“How are you going to pay for it?” Council member Johnny Williams asked.

Nicholson said the group is looking at a number of grants, in addition to individual and corporate donations.

“We would love to have city or county funds, but we’re not counting on that,” he said.

Mayor Welborn Adams endorsed the group’s efforts. “I like the plan… A lot of people have asked me about the dog park.”

Nicholson said there would need to be some work done on trees on the property.

Council will officially consider the plan at its regular meeting at 5:30 p.m. next Monday, April 15.

In other business during the work session, City Manager Charlie Barrineau said Police Chief Gerald Brooks and Sheriff Tony Davis are proposing to create a third multijurisdictional task force.

The city and council already have two combined task forces, a SWAT Team and a Drug Enforcement Unit. Council will be asked to consider an agreement that will create a team expressly designed to deal with violent crime.

“Criminals don’t care who has jurisdiction,” Barrineau said. He said the violent crime team would allow the city and county to share information about violent crime cases.

In a related matter, Barrineau reminded council that between $80,000 and $90,000 in “new money” that will be used to hire police officers will require a budget amendment.

The “new money” will come about as a result of CPW no longer charging the city for a line that it has been previously charged for.

The gang investigator was hired from inside the department and the process for filling the vacated position is ongoing. “The greatest need right now is night time road officers,” Barrineau said. Finding candidates for the new positions will require between 60 and 90 days.

Assistant to the City Manager Julie Wilkie made a presentation concerning new “welcome” signs that will be replaced on four sides of the city. They will be located at Reynolds/Cokesbury (replacing a sign on the Laurens Highway), Maxwell/S.C. 225, S.C. 72 Bypass (near Countybank) and U.S. 25/Calhoun (near CVS). The signs have been redesigned and would be lighted and landscaped.



Related Stories:
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• "Put Down The Guns Young People" marches through Greenwood
• Brown cites County Council members' pay irregularity
• City, county officials investigating more vehicle break-ins



Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Article comment by: tim latham

Kevin i agree with you on the hospitality tax. it keeps being spent on downtown. when the majority is not collected there.
This spot would be a great place for the Festival of Discovery. it would be much cooler holding it on grass instead of asphalt. My guess is if the city decides to spend money creating a park. it will be spent at the old mill site. it sits on the edge of downtown, and butts up against all the money spent on redoing maxwell avenue.


Posted: Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Article comment by: Kevin Prater

Grace Street Park will be a wonderful green space that will be enjoyed by all (even pets) and appreciated for generations to come. I would think the city could use monies collected from the hospitality TAX , that our wonderful citizens pay to build a beautiful park or what about the 30 million in dam tax money that is supposedly still sitting out there some where (is it not?)I think the interest alone on that money would be enough to help keep the grounds in great shape. Either way there should be available funds for such a wonderful project.
After that could the city/county please start doing more to help our youth in parks and rec????




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