The proposed 33½- acre site off Hickory Road will adjoin the Harmony on the Lakes planned community where additional future development is expected, Mayor Tim Downing said Thursday.
“It’s a good location for population, gives us enough space to do a lot of different things and offer services within the park system,” Downing said.
Cherokee County Director of Capital Projects Bill Echols led Thursday’s tour, explaining that the city and county will work together on the master planning of the park project that will come in several phases.
City Manager Rob Logan said he has already heard from several local traveling baseball teams who are advocating for the new park to include regulation baseball fields, while residents would like to see an off-leash dog park similar to Canton Paw Park.
Downing said officials with the city are in the process of evaluating what the land could yield, but hopes to include a baseball field and two multi-use fields, walking trails and a community center. Logan said initial plans call for the structure to be roughly 15,000 square feet.
“Eventually we’d like to build the community center on the high side of the property that could include a basketball and volleyball courts and meeting rooms,” Downing said.
Downing said a portion of the county’s parks bond fund, $1.5 million of which is designated for Holly Spring, as well as the city’s parks and recreation fund will help fund the project.
He said the overall project may take about five years, but some of the proposed projects should be developed within the next year to 18 months.
As the park is in the initial planning stage, Downing said he expects to get a lot of feedback from the community in coming weeks.
“At this point, everyone has been very positive and excited about it,” Downing said.
Downing said the property went on the market three years ago and the city purchased it in 2011. In acquiring the property, the city always intended to use it for a park facility, Downing said.
Expected within the next few months, Downing said development cost projections will determine what the city will be able to do with the initial park plans.
Logan said the city will hold one to two public input meetings in the fall to hear from citizens what they would like to see featured in the park.
The park will be the city’s third park facility in addition to Barrett Park, which features a playground and a walking trail, and J.C. Mullins Field, which includes a regulation baseball field, a walking trail, a “tot lot” and picnic pavilion.