NEW BERN – Last night at New Bern’s alderman meeting, they got the go-ahead to get started on a new recreational park covering almost 900 acres after receiving a land donation a few weeks ago.
The only other parks in New Bern are just about six acres.
“We just want so many more opportunities that folks that are here want to stay and folks that are not here yet want to come and live here with us,” Mayor Dana E. Outlaw said.
Miles of walking trails, canoeing, kayaking and fishing are just some of the amenities park developers have in mind for the Martin Marietta Park.
“We have got a large raw piece of land to look at providing something that pretty much anything east of Raleigh is not accessible easily by people who live in eastern North Carolina, city manager Mark Stephens said.
The mayor and city manager say it will stimulate the economy and growth.
“Whenever that word of mouth gets out, hey what about New Bern, look at all they have to offer, it attracts people here,” Stephens said. “It attracts businesses here. Um, if we build an amphitheater, that’s going to put heads in beds in our hotels that’s going to be spending money.”
They say it will create more opportunities for people in the east.
“I just want to see an opportunity for every New Bernian to find their little niche for what they like in recreation here,” Outlaw said.
The next step is legally acquiring the property and then putting a plan together to build it.
They don’t have an exact time frame for when all this will be done, but say things should begin to take shape within a few years