Whitewater recreation in Great Falls draws in new businesses & visitors

CHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (CN2 NEWS) – Its been more than six months since the Duke Energy whitewater project officially opened in Great Falls.

Leaders say outdoor enthusiasts locally and from other states are taking full advantage of the experience.

They are also asking for more amenities for when they visit Chester County.

Owner of The Coffee Bar, Leo Murillo says the new whitewater project is one of the reasons he decided to open shop in downtown Great Falls.

“I think Great Falls will do good, it has the potential to do good, its in a good area”, says Murillo.

All the people who have paddled this water just rave about how good it is”, says Vaughn.

Chester County Councilman for District 4, Mike Vaughn has been a part of the project for years. He says since the water began to flow in March, people locally as well as from out of state have been steadily hitting the water.

Visitors not only want coffee shops and restaurants, thanks to a recent survey by Duke Energy, visitors who paddled the whitewater project said they would like to see lodging opportunities.

“We’ve reached out to a couple of investors about bringing a hotel to that area. But we also met with folks who are opening all sorts of campgrounds”, says Senator Mike Fanning.

South Carolina Senator Mike Fanning gathered recently with several other leaders during the Outdoor Recreational Tourism Committee meeting to get an update on the whitewater project and what visitors and residents are looking for.

“If people are coming down already to four-wheeling, to skydive, to Gallo and now down here, we want to have some synergy between folks so they can make a weekend out of it and make this their outdoor recreation tourism destination”, says Fanning.

Fanning adds thanks to state money there will soon be wayfinding signs for visitors and more

“I was able to get 970,000 dollars in our state budget to build a pedestrian bridge that will cross the river on the north end that will connect the historic Nitrolee building & access area to our Carolina Thread Trail”, says Fanning.

Senator Mike Fanning also giving an update on the new state park on Dearborn Island. Construction is set to begin in 2024. By 2025, the bridge will be open as well as trails and camping.

Related links: https://www.cn2.com/whitewater-recreation-set-to-open-this-weekend-in-great-falls/

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