The Anderson County Legislative Delegation recently voted unanimously to endorse a $75,000 grant from the state’s Water Recreational Resource Fund for improvements at Dolly Cooper Park in Powdersville.
The $75,000 grant will be combined with other county funding to improve an existing kayak launch area at Dolly Cooper Park. A 1,500’ long, 10’ wide ADA-accessible shoreline trail will be installed to allow enhanced pedestrian access to the banks of the Saluda. For persons who wish to do some river rafting or tubing but are not inclined to make a full-blown river excursion, the shoreline trail will offer access to a 1/3-mile portion of the Saluda with defined water entry/exit points, allowing users to spend as much time on the river as they would like without leaving the confines of Dolly Cooper Park.
In addition, a boardwalk will be constructed to improve ADA-accessibility to the existing kayak launch. Landscaping and parking improvements will also be made as part of the project. Anderson County will be providing substantial in-kind resources in order to ensure maximum utility of available grant dollars.
These improvements at Dolly Cooper Park come on the heels of the announcement by Anderson County of its purchase of a 28-acre site on the banks of the Saluda just north of the Piedmont Dam. The county will be moving rapidly to provide an ADA-accessible kayak launch and other site improvements on that site in the coming months. Also, construction is expected to begin in the coming weeks on improvements at the Saluda River Blue Trail facility at Belton Landing, located on Cooley Bridge Road.
Resulting from a community-based vision involving public recreation providers, private sector interests, recreational enthusiasts, advocates for the physically-challenged, environmental groups, and individuals, the Saluda River Blue Trail serves to enhance recreational access for kayakers and others in the six Upstate South Carolina counties that border the Saluda River, including Abbeville, Anderson, Greenville, Greenwood, Laurens, and Pickens Counties. This collaboration represents a regional effort to promote and preserve our local natural resource by creating river access and resource awareness.