Leaders hoping to add spark to the Electric City with a bike and pedestrian connectivity plan

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ANDERSON, SC (WSPA)– More spark is coming to the Electric City with a plan to make Anderson more walk-able and bike-able.

The City has been in the planning and implementation stage for about six years. Now they’re ready to give bikers and walkers a safe environment to explore downtown and community destinations, by connecting them through trails.

“There’s no where really in Anderson to ride your bike…in a safe area without having to cross lots of roads,” said Ginger Sonen, Anderson County resident.

Sonen said she wants more places for her family to enjoy in a safe environment.

“We’d be able to ride our bikes together and explore more of Anderson instead of just being in one area,” Sonen said.

Leaders in Anderson said they’ve heard these concerns from many. That’s why a bicycle and pedestrian master plan is in the works.

“The Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan for Anderson was developed in 2014. It was essentially created to help us envision what safe, effective, useful bicycle and pedestrian pathways could look like in Anderson,” said Andrew Strickland, Assistant City Manager for Anderson.

The City has been drawing up plans and constructions documents to link different areas of the community together. Their biggest push right now, is in the Whitner Creek Greenway.

“That will include the landscaping and layout for the Southern section of Linley Park,” Strickland said.

The Whitner Creek Greenway will connect the Anderson Recreation Center to Linley Park using about a mile and a half of new trails. Leaders tell 7-News it’ll cost around $2.5 million.

“We want to make sure it’s useful for the community and people will use it once it’s out there,” Strickland said.

The southern park of Linley Park will receive new playground upgrades. Officials said the baseball field will move to the Recreation Center Complex to create more space.

“We’ve heard from our community and it’s detailed in our Parks and Rec. Master Plan is to actually move the baseball field from the southern section of Linley Park to the Rec Center complex. And that’s actually being designed right now,” Strickland said.

“That’s a wonderful idea. My kids have gotten older and we can ride bikes and we can all hang out together and just play,” Sonen said.

The City hopes this will increase the walk and bike ability of their town.

“It’s important for the City of Anderson to have recreation amenities. Our citizens aspect a certain level of amenities throughout the City,” Strickland said.

While others hope this will bring more people to the community.

“I hope the updates to the Greenway and to the park will bring new families to the area,” Sonen added.

City leaders are expecting to have public hearings this Summer that will allow those living in the area to give their input. The City plans to break ground on this project beginning in the Fall.

Right now, City leaders said they are looking at the possibility of bringing another trail through the middle of downtown some time in the future.

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