New Public Meeting Scheduled for State Park Study on Black River

Raleigh

The state of North Carolina is seeking feedback on a feasibility study evaluating the suitability of a state park on the Black River in parts of Sampson, Bladen and Pender counties. During the 2017 legislative session, the N.C. General Assembly directed the N.C. Division of Parks and Recreation to conduct the study and report results to the Legislative Oversight Committee on Agriculture and Natural and Economic Resources by March 1, 2018.

Open houses were held in September to gather public input on the study. About 200 interested residents attended the open houses and provided input for the division to use as it moves forward.

An additional open house is scheduled to discuss concerns expressed by attendees at prior public meetings. The open house will be held Nov. 16, 2017, from 5 p.m. - 7 p.m. at the Ivanhoe Fire Station, 18933 Hwy 210 East, Ivanhoe, N.C. The meeting will be an open house format so attendees can stop in to talk with Division of Parks and Recreation staff at their convenience.

The Black River is home to large cypress trees, some of which are more than 1,600 years old, and a popular paddling destination in an area currently underserved by the State Parks system. The study area is roughly 2,600 acres and includes 45 miles of the Black River corridor.

The study will create a vision for what a state park, natural area, or trail could look like, including what amenities would be most important to nearby communities and other potential users. It will include an evaluation of the natural and cultural heritage significance of the area, whether it meets criteria to be part of the state park system, the suitability of the Black River for recreation, and a cost estimate for developing the park.

About North Carolina State Parks
North Carolina State Parks manages more than 232,000 acres of iconic landscape within North Carolina’s state parks, state recreation areas and state natural areas. It administers the N.C Parks and Recreation Trust Fund, including its local grants program, as well as a state trails program, North Carolina Natural and Scenic Rivers and more, all with a mission dedicated to conservation, recreation and education. The state parks system welcomes more than 19 million visitors annually.

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