Noteworthy

Local counties getting state funds for parks

Posted May 23, 2008

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— A number of local governments were among the 34 recipients of $12.8 million in grants announced Friday by the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

The matching grants, funded through the state Parks and Recreation Trust Fund, give up to $500,000 to a single project that develops or renovates public recreational facilities. State officials considered 89 grant applications totaling more than $27 million.

"State and local governments have been partners in providing green space and outdoor recreational opportunities to citizens across the state," DENR secretary William Ross said. "The result has been healthier communities and healthier citizens and improvement in the quality of life in North Carolina."

Harnett, Hoke, Pitt and Scotland counties received the full award for several projects.

Harnett will use the $500,000 grant to make improvements to Barbecue Creek Park, including renovating the ballfield, multipurpose field and tennis courts. Upgrades will also be made to trails, picnic shelters and the restroom and concession building.

Hoke plans to build a community center that will feature an indoor track, weight room, aerobics room, gymnasium and locker rooms. The center will also have meeting rooms and reception space.

Pitt received grants totaling $600,000 for two separate projects.

The first phase of recreational park development will build a Little League ballfield, football and soccer fields, tennis courts and walking trails. Pitt County District Park will also get a playground, softball field and four courts each for horseshoes and boccie ball.

Scotland County will spend its full grant to create a recreational center in Wagram.

Among other grants, $400,000 will allow Alamance County to acquire 235 acres for trail easements around the county greenway.

Person County's $327,500 grant will fund constructing the Mayo Park Environmental Education Center, with a fishing pier, trails, picnic shelters and playground.

Edgecombe County received $65,000 to create picnic areas, two playgrounds and restrooms at Conetoe Town Park. Moore County will add playgrounds, trails, picnic tables and restrooms at Phillips Memorial Park with a grant of $30,000.

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