SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – Duncan Park is celebrating its 100th year anniversary and, after a century, the park’s purpose is set to expand.

The sounds of the end of summer fill this 102 acre park nestled in the heart of Spartanburg.

“Duncan Park has a great history,” said Christopher George, Communications Manager for the City of Spartanburg. “The lake is an old WPA project that was built in the Depression.”

The park was originally founded in the 1920’s when the property was given to the City of Spartanburg. While Spartanburg has grown exponentially since then, the park has become stagnant.

“The greenspace around the lake we know that it isn’t getting the amount of use that it could get and that has been the case for a really long time,” George added.

That is low in comparison to the rail trail.

“(The rail trail) is just across from the entrance of the park and it gets over 200k uses a year on that trail and Duncan Park gets just over 10k uses,” said Laura Ringo, the Executive Director of PAL.

So, in order to get some of that traffic towards the lake, improvements to the park are on the way.

“We have a pilot program to allow some kayaking and maybe some paddle boarding on the lake as well as some upgrades to the trails,” George said. “A lot of things to get folks out there enjoying that space a little more because it is very large, but it is underutilized.”

The park applied for both state and federal funding for these projects with the goal of making it enjoyable for another 100 years.

“This is a really great park and it’s beautiful, it’s such a gift to our community but it’s not being utilized to its fullest potential. We’re excited for the opportunity to get more people out here to create a destination that people are really excited to come visit,” Ringo said.

The city said they plan to improve the connection of the Mary Black Foundation Rail Trail to Duncan Park.

Improvements to Duncan will start this fall, with trail infrastructure and clearing of invasive plants.