MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD)- “Thrilled,” and “elated,” are the words that Blake Barbre has to describe his feelings now that a beloved park will stay untouched by construction equipment.
Patty Speights Field in the Old Village of Mount Pleasant will not be used as a parking lot for heavy construction equipment after the community rallied together in opposition.
The park is a community gathering spot that plays host to birthday parties, daily pickup sports games and most importantly to families a drop off and pick up location for school children.
Starting October 1, the equipment was going to parked at the field for a year. That’s when neighbors called News 2 and the Town of Mount Pleasant.
“Safety is an obvious concern when you’re a parent, with small children especially. You try to watch them and look after them and keep them as safe as possible,” said Barbre. “But you can’t keep your eyes on them all the time. So not having this heavy machinery, not having this equipment, not having these workers come here every day is a big relief for us.”
The construction equipment will instead be stored at Duffy Field at Mount Pleasant Academy. Lights and fencing make that location a safer option than Speights Field.
“The original decision was made at a staff and contractor level. We at the elected level did not know about it. But once our citizens got in touch, we got with our staff, we got with the contractor and they decided to be responsive and to move it,” said Mount Pleasant Mayor Will Haynie.
The change moves the heavy equipment out of a residential area and to a place that is better for the Old Village community.
Mount Pleasant Public Services tells News 2 that there is a coordinated effort between Mount Pleasant Academy, Charleston County School District and the construction contractor to keep students safe now that the equipment has been moved.
The plan is to have smooth drop off and pick up times with the presence of the heavy equipment being transported to and from the school on a daily basis.