East Spencer seeks input regarding Royal Giants Park renovation plans
By Shavonne Walker
EAST SPENCER — The town is hoping the community will provide feedback about its Phase I plans for Royal Giants Park with a letter, social media comments or in person at town hall. The town has been working since 2012 on a plan of redeveloping the park, located off Long and Andrews streets.
The town began in 2012 with an assessment questionnaire from the community and a land survey conducted by Shulenberger Surveying. In 2014, volunteers made improvements including building a picnic shelter. There will be at least four phases, but the town has focused its efforts on completing phase I. The town has hired Ramsay, Burgin, Smith Architects for engineering work of Phase I.
Phase I of the redevelopment master plan will include a splash park, a picnic shelter, cornhole toss courts, renovations to the restroom/shelter, basketball courts and playground. The improvements also include entrance signs and walking trails. Part of the plan includes creating a new access road into the park since the current entrance at Robinson Road cuts through the middle of the park.
In September, the town received a $300,000 NC Parks and Recreation Trust Fund grant. The town has also received a $300,000 grant and has raised $300,000 more through donations and pledges. The town began collecting money in 2012 with an initial $15,000 contribution from the town and earmarked three subsequent $15,000 donations in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
The town also received contributions from the Julian & Blanche Robertson Foundation for $25,000; Margaret Woodson Foundation for $25,000; a $30,000 donation from the Stanback Foundation; two donations from the county for $20,000 and $47,000 as well as pledges from the Carolina Thread Trail Foundation for $30,500 and F&M Bank Foundation for $10,000. Other pledges and donations have been given in the last two years.
The town held an informal walk-in in late March where residents had an opportunity to see and discuss the renovation plans. Interim Town Administrator F.E. Isenhour has said there are few changes to the initial plans.
Any comments can be made in person at town hall, 105 S. Long St., or through the town’s Facebook social media page that can be found by searching Town East Spencer.
Contact reporter Shavonne Walker at 704-797-4253.
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