Chester State Park will begin construction of a new pier and boardwalk this fall that will provide a platform for fishing as well as public access to about 170 acres of unused park property on the other side of the lake. The boardwalk is expected to be under construction through the winter and open in early 2015.
It is being funded with $50,000 from the Water Recreational Resources Fund managed by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, and a matching grant from the Lutz Foundation of Chester.
“The primary purpose of the Water Recreational Resources Fund is to expand water-based recreational opportunities for our constituents,” said Emily Cope, DNR Deputy Director of the Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division. “We are pleased to partner with the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism on this project, which will greatly enhance fishing access at Chester State Park.”
Preliminary designs call for the boardwalk to cross over a large cove where 2-Mile Branch feeds into the lake, connecting the park’s day-use area to its remote property. Midway through its length, the boardwalk will widen to provide a platform for fishing into the deepest part of the cove.
Park officials say a short nature trail and bank fishing access are additional recreational activities that will be available on the remote property. Also scheduled to be under construction on the property are new hike-in primitive camping areas for organized groups.
“It has long been a hope of ours to open up this beautiful side of the park for the public to enjoy,” said SCPRT Director Duane Parrish. “We are grateful to our partners at DNR and the Lutz Foundation for making this possible.”
During construction this fall and winter, Chester State Park will seek volunteer assistance from scout organizations and other groups throughout the region. Chester State Park is one of 16 state parks in South Carolina built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. It is a popular spot for hiking, picnicking, boating and fishing for the surrounding communities of the Piedmont. The park opened a new, tournament-grade disc golf course less than one year ago, also partially funded by the Lutz Foundation.
For more information on the park and the proposed new boardwalk, contact Marion Edmonds at email@example.com or 803-734-1370.