Columbia County G.O. Bonds to fund new park projects

COLUMBIA COUNTY, Ga. (WJBF) – Columbia County is hitting the ground running when it comes to projects paid for by a General Obligation Bond.

That bond was approved by voters in November.

Now, county leaders have a long list of projects where that money will be spent.

The county has gotten an extra $10 million to help fund the list of G.O. Bond projects.

That brings the total amount the county can spend to $70 million.

Part of that money will be used to add and expand parks in the county.

As little Sailor has fun in the sun at Evans Towne Center Park, her parents will soon have another spot to take her.

Tuesday morning, Columbia County commissioners received $70 million for the list of General Obligation Bond projects.

Now, planning is underway to expand or build several parks within the county.

“With the sale of the bonds, we have the money already available for these four projects and we’re in the process of selecting architects,” said Director of Community and Leisure Services John Luton.

The first park on the list for expansion is Patriots Park.

Melissa Bailey says during peak times, parking can be a nightmare.

“It’s not uncommon that you have to wait to back out of your parking space or have someone kind enough to let you in,” said Bailey.

When completed, Patriots Park will have more parking, four new soccer fields and an extra entrance on William Few Parkway to help ease traffic flow and connect the entire park.

Bailey says she wishes it could have been that way last year.

“You would have to turn left and sit at the traffic light, then turn left in so that would be a huge time saver for multiple kids playing on different fields,” said Bailey.

Second on the list is Lakeside Park.

Luton says there will be more multi-purpose fields and tennis courts, which the county hopes will bring in larger state and regional tournaments.

A new park at the Gateway in Grovetown will mimic Evans Towne Center park but with a little something extra.

“The Gateway Park, we want to have sort of a destination water feature. Not a pool, sort of a zero gravity splash padding combination,” said Luton.

That’s good news for little Sailor and the adults who bring her to Evans Towne Center Park for a day of fun.

“With a baby, it’s not easy to pack up and haul all the way over here. So, it will be a lot better to have that closer,” said John Paul Cates.

Community and Leisure Services is also working on green space at the Plaza and a farmer’s market.

The plans are subject to change as the development progresses.

All of these projects mentioned are set to be complete in just a little more than a year.

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