Grand plans for Havelock's Slocum Creek recreational area

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Scott Chase, a municipal planner with the Wooten Company and the former city planner for Havelock, speaks to Havelock commissioners and city staff as he presents a slide that shows the outline of a proposed park off Slocum Creek during a meeting on Monday.

Drew C. Wilson/Havelock News
Published: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 at 04:08 PM.

A former Havelock city planner presented a prospective plan for the development of the Slocum Creek Recreation Area to commissioners and city staff during a board meeting on Monday at the Havelock Tourist and Event Center.

"If you build it, they will come and this is a good example of that," said Scott Chase, a municipal planner with the Wooten Company who resigned late in 2012 as Havelock’s planning director just as the recreation area in the heart of the city was beginning to take shape.

Last week, the city closed on 2.5 acres with waterfront on Slocum Creek and street frontage on Church Road and Woodland Drive that will serve as the central property in the park plan. The city paid $7,000 out of the total $185,000 purchase price for the property thanks to Coastal Area Management Act, Bate Foundation and Environmental Enhancement grants through cooperation with the N.C. Coastal Land Trust.

The city is seeking other property along the creek as part of the park project designed to give residents and visitors water access.

Amenities proposed include an elevated bridge for bikes and pedestrians that would cross Slocum Creek from an old grist mill dam near the Havelock Tourist and Event Center to the park.

Small craft launch points will be constructed at the creek bank for kayaks and canoes.

The historic Trader Store and World War II-era train depot would be relocated to the property and used for education and special events.

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