Federal and City Officials Approve Plan to Reduce Flooding and Build Park in Bull Street Neighborhood

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO)- In the fourth year of a 20-year development project, a new storm water management plan has received city and federal approval, allowing a creek that was once free flowing to run again, this time through a 20-acre city park.

“We’re going to be bringing the stream back up to the surface, allowing it to flow naturally through the site and receive all the benefits that water receives through the daylight of sun and therefore improve the water quality, improve the natural habitat around the creek and have it be an amenity with in the park that is going to be an anchor for the entire Bull Street development,” said Robert Hughes of Hughes Development Corporation.

In the past, Smith Branch caused major storm water runoff for people in surrounding communities.

“Smith Branch actually flows from here to Earlewood Park where it has historically flooded and then it goes into the canal where we get our drinking water. This should be the crown jewel of Downtown Columbia,” said Rebecca Haynes of the Bull street Commission. “What they did by burying the stream many years ago was not how we should treat our urban water environment so I hope we can take this as an opportunity to do better and set higher standards for how we develop Columbia and redevelop Downtown Columbia.”

City leaders and developers are hoping the park they place here will not only be good for the environment but also a place for the public to enjoy. Officials said the park is apart of the city’s original infrastructure investment in Bull Street funded by dollars that were already allocated for the project.



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