WEST COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - City leaders in West Columbia have cut the ribbon on a refurbished Riverwalk but as warmer weather approaches, there are some concerns about parking this time around.
It's been one thing after the next for the Riverwalk and amphitheater here in West Columbia, but it's finally up and running.
Saturday evening was the first Rhythm on the River concert at the Riverwalk. Before the concert, town officials gathered for a ribbon-cutting to officially re-open the Riverwalk. It was closed for a year after the October 2015 flooding and just when things started looking up Hurricane Matthew hit. It took another small beating this week when severe thunderstorms rolled through our area.
Since the Riverwalk re-opened, some changes have been made to the neighborhood that might not make it feel like the same old Riverwalk residents are used to. City officials are happily enjoying the improvements and success after the hard work to get the Riverwalk running again. Community members, however, say more work needs to be done.
For starters, there is still tons of construction in the area and not enough places to park.
Especially for people like Michael Mayo who pushes kayaking & tubing tourism down the river with the Palmetto Outdoor Center. Mayo called the parking situation just a small hurdle. The city, however, says they're making adjustments the best they can.
"This year it appears that parking will be what we have to work out a parking solution. So, we find this to be quite a compliment to the area even though we will have to work around some parking issues. I think that in the end, it will be we will be able to come to a conclusion both areas," Mayo explained.
The town says when they host events like Rhythm on the River, they will put a trolley system in place that will bus people to and from the parking lot located on Meeting Street.
"Trolley's will be here every Rhythm on the River and for any other special events that are occurring at the Riverwalk. But the parking has been secured and we secured a lot on Meeting Street. It has additional parking and once this little section of Alexander Road opens it will be easier for pedestrians to walk down here," West Columbia resident Anna Huffman.