Connecting the Past with the Future
This week’s blog is written by Kevin Stiens, Parks and Recreation Director, Spartanburg County Parks Department
The Spartanburg County Parks Department recently completed renovations to historic Berry Field. While Berry Field is part of Cleveland Park, it has been separated from the rest of the park by Asheville Highway. For many years, Berry Field was the heartbeat of Cleveland Park serving as the home to many textile, fastpitch softball leagues that date back to the 1920’s. However, Asheville Highway created a pedestrian barrier that divided the singular park in to two pieces and limited pedestrian access.
Health by Design
Research has taught us that the built environment has a significant impact on public health. Well-designed parks and trails play an important role on the built environment promoting increased physical activity and improved health benefits. When renovating Berry Field, Spartanburg County looked to make improvements that would allow for increased access by pedestrians and connect the neighborhoods on either side of Asheville Highway.
A key component of the renovations, included construction of an underpass that would allow pedestrians to safely travel from one side of Asheville Highway to the other. This investment to improve pedestrian safety improved pedestrian access, connected neighborhoods, and created additional walking trails for the public to use. Our hope is that the improvements to the built environment will have a positive impact on the health and wellness of the community. We look forward to seeing you out in our parks.