MCDUFFIE COUNTY, Ga. - McDuffie County and the city of Thomson have been granted a $2.2 million state grant for the construction of a new park. This Improving Neighborhood Outcomes in Disproportionately Impacted Communities Grant is part of more than $220 million similar awards.

McDuffie County made the announcement about the grant Tuesday morning. According to the announcement, the new park will be located along Railroad St. next to the county government center. The county says the park plan calls for playgrounds, picnic areas, a water fountain, an amphitheater, and other amenities.

“We wanted to focus on something that would give families a place to gather and have fun, while giving us another option for a venue for events,” said McDuffie County Manager David Crawley. “We are very excited about this grant project and appreciate the state’s support of our efforts to improve our community.”

County officials say they hope the park will be the centerpiece for downtown Thomson's revitalization. They hope to accomplish that by including amenities like a walking trail they're calling the "Music Mile" that would start at the new park and run through downtown. Officials say they plan to include information points along the trail, detailing the area's local music history.

“This park is a very important piece of our plan to improve Thomson,” said Thomson Mayor Kenneth Usry, who has advocated for the park for several years. “I am ready to see it move from being just a set of plans on paper.”

Officials say construction should begin later in 2023 and will take around eighteen months to complete.

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