Plans for developing parkland the City of Greenville purchased along the Tar River last year are moving ahead as the officials consider 30 ideas for naming the park.
The 185 acre parcel informally called the “adventure park” sits on the north bank of the just east of U.S. 264. It includes a lake that is joined to the river via a narrow waterway.
The city plans to begin construction later this month on a primitive trail that will eventually link the new recreational area to River Park North, which borders the river west of the highway.
Greenville Recreation and Parks Director Gary Fenton updated the city council on plans in a July 1 memorandum. It said city staff used Facebook last month to gather public input on possible names for the park.
The most popular response, with eight votes, was Emerald Riverfront Park, followed by Pirate Bay, six votes; Riverfront North, five votes and Mike Hamer Park and Tuscarora Park, with four votes each.
Other recommendations included Green Life Park, Midway Creek North, Hurit Park, Unity Park and Wildwood Park.
“Staff will reach out to additional community partners to gather input and will formulate a list of names that can be publicized for further consideration,” Fenton said.
The city’s Recreation and Parks Commission will hold a public hearing on the naming process. The date has not been publicly set. The recommended names will be posted on the city’s website, www.greenvillenc.gov, for 30 days prior to the hearing.
The recreation commission will submit its recommendation to the City Council which has the final say.
The proposed primitive trail will run 1¼ miles from River Park North to U.S. 264, according to a presentation staff made in January. The work was supposed to mainly consist of removing trees and smoothing out the path.
At that time recreation staff was working with South Carolina-based Benchmark Trails to complete plans for the primitive trail project.
Finalizing the plan was supposed to take five or six weeks, but there have been no discussions about the project since city council meetings started being conducted virtually in April.
The city also plans to begin improvements on the actual adventure park property. A primitive trail will be constructed around the lake on the property. A parking lot also will be built along with a lakeside canoe/kayak launching area with a sandy beach.
The city has to secure permits for the work, Fenton said. The goal to begin the work in September.
No date has been set for opening the adventure park to the public.
There are two additional phases in the park’s development and staff is working to secure funding for Phase 2; a floating dock with a canoe/kayak launch and boat slips and three camping platforms. Construction on this phase is planned to begin January or February 2021.
Phase 3 involves the construction of boardwalk and bridges that will eventually connect the River Park North primitive trail and the adventure park trail. When completed, the city will have almost four miles of waterside trail.
“The sections of boardwalk and bridges will be signature pieces that will serve our current citizens and help draw visitors to our park system and the city,” Fenton said.
Design work will begin in the fall, he said.