Hartsville contracts with water park builder

By Samantha Lyles, Staff Writer, slyles@newsandpress.net

The planned expansion of the popular Piratesville Splash Pad into a multi-featured water park took another step forward as Hartsville City Council voted at their August 1 special meeting to contract with a design and build firm.

After reviewing four design build proposals, Hartsville opted to use Trident Construction, LLC of North Charleston for their Design Build contractor. Trident lists several similar projects among their building credits, including water parks and splash zones built for Charleston County Parks and Recreation and aquatic centers built for Orangeburg and New Bern, North Carolina.

Mayor Mel Pennington said the city has been communicating with several groups that use the soccer fields at Byerly Park over concerns that the fields would be sacrificed to expand the water park. He said that trimming some features from the water park plans will allow the soccer fields and the new park expansion to co-exist.

“At one point, we were entertaining the thought of doing a crystal lagoon, which was going to consume all of the fields. Now that has been tremendously scaled back, so we should have plenty of space,” said Pennington.

Also on the agenda, Council passed Resolution 08-17-02, approving a bid award of $767,287 for North American Construction Company, Inc. of Quinby to perform upgrades to the Black Creek Pump Station.

In May, Council approved Resolution 05-17-03 to allocate match dollars from Water and Sewer Reserve Funds to pay for Black Creek Pump Station upgrades. The city committed $456,225 so SC Rural Infrastructure Authority (RIA) would commit $321,575 for this project. The bid amount will result in $445,712.00 being deducted from the city’s Water and Sewer Reserve Fund.

Upgrading this pump station should fix the decaying wet well and make it structurally sound. The project also aims to reduce debris being pumped to the wastewater treatment facility, provide increased capacity for the pump station, and provide an emergency backup if the city’s pump station is hit with an electrical failure.

Council unanimously approved Resolution 08-17-01, adopting changes to the City of Hartsville’s FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) policy in compliance with new state regulations.

All FOIA requests for public records and documents must be made in writing and submitted either in person at the Hartsville City Hall (located at 100 E Carolina Ave, Hartsville), by mail to City of Hartsville, Attn: City Clerk, P.O. Drawer 2497, Hartsville, SC 29551, or by email to city.clerk@hartsvillesc.gov.

An official FOIA request form is available from the city, and the complete fee schedule for FOIA related printing, materials, and labor costs is available as well. Minimum charge for any FOIA processing is $3, plus .25 per page for paper copies and $15 per hour for staff labor.

Response deadlines require that the City Clerk respond to all FOIA requests within these time frames: for a document less than 24 months, respond within 10 business days; for a document more than 24 months old, respond within 20 business days. Documents less than 24 months old must be produced within 30 calendar days, and documents more than 24 months old must be produced within 35 calendar days.

Council also approved a lease for 201 W Carolina Ave to Back Barn Barbecue, LLC. The city purchased this property as part of a long-term plan to relocate Public Safety operations to a new facility, but that project is roughly three years away. City manager Natalie Zeigler said leasing the building will cost the city nothing in property upfit (lessee Scottie Gainey will be responsible for that), and will allow the restaurant time to get established in a location that already has a full kitchen. The lease is for two years at $500 per month.

Author: Duane Childers

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