Fort Mill council members voted this week to approve a funding scenario that they are hoping will fund over $20 million in projects with a mixture of cash and debt. The seven priority projects include:
• Banks Athletic Park Construction
• Fire Station #2
• Banks Street Gym
• Walter Y. Elisha Park Amphitheatre
• Walter Y. Elisha Park Improvements
• Walter Y. Elisha Park Restrooms
• Recreation Complex Tennis Courts
Council members met Monday morning to get the ball moving for the upcoming budget, approving a scenario that will likely pay for the projects with cash boosted by $3 million in debt. They had other options that involved only cash or taking on more debt, but they voted 5-1 to approve the smaller amount of debt.
In addition to moving forward with financing for park improvements, a new fire station and other facility renovations, the council made a name change to the Banks Street Gym. The facility will now be called the Fort Mill Community Center. The name change avoids confusion with the Banks Athletic Complex, the coming park to be located at Banks Road and Sparkling Brook Parkway.
The Banks Athletic Complex will be located on a 25-acre park that was donated by Lennar as part of Waterside at the Catawba. It is expected to include four baseball/softball fields, a picnic shelter, restrooms and more.
Renovations to the old Bank Street Gym will allow for upgrades to the interior and exterior along with parking, event rental space and meeting rooms.
Final approval for projects and funding amounts are expected in the coming weeks as town staff present a proposed budget to the council for approval.