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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Supporters need 70-mile park community alongside SC’s Black River

KINGSTREE, S.C. (AP) — A coalition working to attach a dozen native, state and personal parks alongside 70 miles (113 kilometers) of South Carolina’s Black River has launched a plan. Now all they want is $45 million to finish the undertaking.

The Black River Water Path and Park Community would begin in Kingstree in Williamsburg County and wind alongside the darkish, slow-moving river to the place it meets the Pee Dee River simply north of Georgetown.

The community would come with South Carolina’s latest state park, a spot alongside the river that the institute is donating to the state Division of Parks, Recreation and Tourism. It might additionally embrace the Black River Touchdown in Kingstree, the publicly obtainable Black River Cypress Protect and The Nature Conservancy’s Black River Protect and Rocky Level Group Forest in Georgetown.

Supporters are looking for cash from the federal authorities, state lawmakers, COVID-19 aid, different grants and personal donations.

For hundreds of years, the Black River was the middle of journey, enterprise and most life close to South Carolina’s coast. The river community may spotlight all of that, mentioned Maria Whitehead, vice chairman for land for the Southeast on the Open House Institute.

“The grasp plan faucets this gorgeous and ecologically very important river’s potential by making a world-class park community that will even present recreation, tourism, and flood resilience,” Whitehead mentioned.

The community would come with campsites, flood-resistant tree homes, mountain climbing trails, boardwalks, picnic shelters and a customer heart.

“A customer can spend just a few hours picnicking or mountain climbing at one of many websites,” mentioned Gates Roll, proprietor of information service Black Water Outdoors. “Or, for the extra adventurous, put a kayak in at Kingstree and spend every week paddling all the way down to Rocky Level stopping and tenting on the many park websites alongside the way in which.”

The plan would additionally mitigate issues from catastrophic flooding. By maintaining the floodplain undeveloped, the land acts as a sponge for the surplus water and slows it down, permitting extra of it to be absorbed over time, South Carolina Chief Resilience Officer Ben Duncan mentioned.

“By defending the land alongside the river, we’ve got the super alternative to save lots of space residents and companies from the devastation that outcomes from excessive flooding occasions which can be turning into increasingly frequent,” Duncan mentioned.

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