Grant awarded to develop trail between SWU and Central
A $600,000 Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) grant will fund a new Green Crescent Trail connector between Southern Wesleyan University and downtown Central.
The town of Central plans to build a 3,420 foot long multi-use, paved path for walking and bicycling, which will extend from Bolick Field and continue along S.C. Highway 93 to the edge of Southern Wesleyan’s campus near the Gilbert Track and Soccer Complex. Construction will be funded through TAP, a federal program, along with additional funding being sought by the town of Central. Federal funds are administered and awarded through the local transportation planning organization – GPATS.
“We are excited to have a $600,000 grant for the walking/biking trail that will connect SWU to downtown Central. We feel it will provide a safe and enjoyable route for SWU students,” said Phillip Mishoe, Central town administrator. Mishoe noted that another $600,000 is needed to fund the project, which will have a total cost of $1.2 million.
“We are in the process of securing more grant funding to bridge the funding gap. We hope to have this first leg of the Green Crescent Trail complete in two years,” Mishoe added.
Dr. Todd Voss, Southern Wesleyan University president, enthusiastically said that the grant is a “huge step forward for the community.”
“I was part of the initial group as we studied what a trail would provide for our municipalities, communities and universities, and while the project was huge, we knew if we could break it down into manageable segments, it could be done. It’s incredible that Central is leading the way on this important project,” Voss said.
Chad Carson, who is a founding board member of Friends of the Green Crescent, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is excited about the grant.
"The elected and staff leadership in Central should be applauded for their efforts. The Green Crescent Trail project is something that will make an already great community of Central even better. It will give residents, students, and employees here the opportunity to improve their health by safely walking, running, or biking. And just as important, it will become a physical connection for years to come that represents the already strong bond between Southern Wesleyan University and the Town of Central."
“The Town of Central is a great place to live and work. We want to build on that and make this an even better place. As an elected official it is exciting to work with SWU and other agencies to bring quality of life amenities to our town that we could not bring on our own. This is a great step in that direction,” said Rev. Ken Dill, who is Southern Wesleyan’s associate vice president for spiritual life and also serves as a member of Central Town Council.
The project is part of a larger regional Green Crescent Trail, which will ultimately connect Central, Clemson and Pendleton. Developed so far has been a paved trail in the area of Clemson Elementary that includes a bridge across U.S. Highway 123. For details, visit www.greencrescenttrail.org.
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