Florence city leaders taking early steps to improve city parks

Florence city leaders taking early steps to improve city parks

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - People in one Pee Dee community are concerned about the up-keep of city parks.

Recently, the Maple Park Neighborhood Association informed Florence City Council about some needed repairs following Hurricane Matthew.

The city said it is working with the Federal Emergency Management Association to secure the money needed to make those repairs.

One of the buildings inside the park flooded from heavy rains during Matthew.

"We are expecting that FEMA will reimburse us anywhere from $25,000 to $40,000 for those damages," said Chuck Pope, Florence's public works director. "We will then turn around and make renovations."

City leaders added the park association thought FEMA would be able to provide enough money to build a new structure on the site. They are considering ways to rebuild that structure in the future.

Pope said all the city's parks are behind on some updating. It's an issue that had to be put on the back burner because of the economy and a lack in funding.

According to Pope, the city does consistently update a 10-year capital improvement plan, which lays out needed park updates.

In the next few years, city park improvements are expected to start taking place.

"Our capital plan is based on need, maintenance associated with each of those facilities and new facilities that we would like to see as we grow and move forward as a Florence community," Pope said.

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