Reviewing plans for the new Oakbrook Ashley River Preserve

Dorchester County News

SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – Plans for a new park in Summerville are coming together – the new Oakbrook Ashley Preserve will show off a lot of the Ashley River.

The Oakbrook Ashley River Preserve is located near the end of Dorchester and Ladson Roads. Right now, it’s basically a parking area with a boat ramp and fishing dock.

Town Council is looking at making some changes to allow people to enjoy this portion of land and the Ashley River more fully.

ESP, the town’s consultant, presented two concepts for the project to council last week.

Concept ‘A’ would be more minimalistic. Current parking would only be reconfigured to add more spaces on the same footprint. Boardwalk and paths would be added with multiple overlooks on the Ashley River.

Concept ‘B’ included about 100 more parking spaces, and more restroom facilities, as well as a playground with a misting station for kids. It also includes an amphitheater and pedestrian bridge that could access nearby Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site.

Bob Jackson said a good playground with misting stations in concept ‘B’ is a great idea.

“There are no parks on this side of town where kids can play that are open to everybody,” said Jackson.

Walter Bailey disagreed.

“I like ‘A’ better, concept A; I think it more closely resembles what my idea was to keep it as pristine as we could,” he said.

Bill McIntosh said he also is against a playground. “The opportunity for people to access the river in general is limited.”

He wants what he calls “river dependent activities” at the site.

“I think the idea is to get people on the boardwalks and paths, to get people at the kayak launch in the overlooks and fishing and leave as much of the rest of it in its natural state as possible.”

The consultants will be reworking their plans and creating a final master plan. They say that could be ready as soon as a month from now.

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