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Eat Smart, Move More reveals pathways plan

Posted: April 26, 2013 5:38 p.m.
Updated: April 29, 2013 5:00 a.m.

The results of an eight-month-long planning process will be unveiled at a public meeting May 9 on a new pathways plan for the county. Eat Smart, Move More Kershaw County (ESMMKC) commissioned the Kershaw County Bicycle, Pedestrian and Greenways Plan as a way to encourage healthy living.

“Promoting ways for the community to get outdoors and exercise by providing safe, friendly and scenic bicycle and pedestrian facilities was something we talked about since we first formed,” John Newman, a ESMMKC coalition member, said. “Funding the crafting of a bicycle/pedestrian/greenway plan fit right into the objectives of the Healthy SC Initiative program, and we were fortunate to receive a grant to fund this study.”

The plan outlines new policies and programs along with a blueprint for expanding a safe and inviting network of bicycle, pedestrian and trail facilities. Newman said the plan spawns from citizens currently not feeling safe using the current “automobile-dominate road system” for biking, walking and jogging.

Newman also said that the Kershaw County pathways plan could also influence methods of transportation.

“Although the majority of people would like bike/pedestrian facilities for recreation and exercise, a significant number of folks indicated that if such facilities were available, they would use them for transportation,” Newman said.

The community has been involved throughout the planning process through methods such as surveys, a public workshop, stakeholder interviews and active involvement from a ESMMKC citizen committee. Consultants on the planning committee include Alta Planning + Design, Alliance Consulting Engineers and the Palmetto Conservation Foundation. The planning team used technical data along with the community’s input to develop a plan for Kershaw County.

Newman said the public should expect to see recommendations for new, expanded and improved bicycle, pedestrian and greenway facilities which includes sidewalks, bike lanes, hiking trails and bridal paths. Funding alternatives, local policies and programs will also be recommended during the meeting.

ESMMKC consulted with Alta Planning during the process, which Newsman said is among the premier firms in America for writing bicycle, pedestrian and greenway master plans and assisting in plan implementation. ESMMKC also examined the Richland/Lexington Three Rivers Greenway, Palmetto Trail, Florence Rail Trail and the city of Columbia Bicycle Plan for inspiration.

The pathways meeting will take place at the Robert Mills Courthouse in Camden at 607 Broad St. from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. beginning with a short presentation. ESMMKC urges the community to attend in order to learn about the recommendations, provide feedback and meet with fellow citizens interested in supporting the implementation of the community’s vision for becoming more bike, walk and trail friendly.

For more information visit www.eatsmartmovemoresc.org/kershawcounty. Those interested can also call Pam Spivey (432-0951 or pamspivey@yahoo.com) or Newman (622-8018 or newjohn@sc.rr.com).

 

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