Locust City Council approves new parks and recreation plan
Published 9:49 am Thursday, September 21, 2023
The Locust City Council has set priorities for future plans for the city’s parks and recreation programs and facilities.
By a vote of 5-0, with Larry Baucom and Barry Sims both excused from the meeting, the council this month approved a plan presented by Jon Wood, senior project manager with Benesch, an engineering firm in Charlotte.
Citing a survey in which 156 citizens took part, Wood said the highest priority in terms of facilities was people wanting to see more walking pathways. Additional playground facilities were second on the survey, followed by a new community building, a dog park and picnic shelters.
The survey also determined new walking, jogging and running programs should be the city’s highest priority, followed by general fitness programs, more chances to visit the parks and special events.
In the survey, 96% of citizens said Locust was a good place to live, and 91% chose Locust as an excellent place to raise children. Regarding the city’s image, 85% voted the city had a positive image.
Wood also presented possibilities for the city to gain land to expand the parks and recreation programs.
Included on the list is the 38-acre field right behind city hall, a site for festivals throughout the year.
Other properties were mentioned as potential places for Locust to expand parks and recreation if the city acquired the land, including properties behind Officer Jeff Shelton Park.
Recommendations of the plan included making playgrounds more inclusive, improving a pedestrian plan to make sure parks are accessible and creating a parks and rec advisory board or Friends of the Parks group to provide community support for the program.