All too often, municipal parks and recreation projects are viewed as nothing more than a non-revenue producing amenity for local residents; a point of view that the National Recreation and Park Association has long been working to change. A new study released this month by the Greenville Recreation District shows that the 14 mile Greenville Health System Swamp Rabbit Trail brought in $6.7 million to the Greenville area during the June 2013-2014 period. A healthy increase over the previous two years for both usage and economic impact.
The report, completed by Furman University Associate Professor of Health Sciences, Dr. Julian Reed, tracked the impacts that the trail has had on economic, health and fitness, and real property values in along the Greenville – Traveler’s Rest corridor as well as the greater Greenville area. At least seven new businesses with a direct connection to trail users have opened along the route including restaurants, bike rentals, B&Bs, and grocery ‘corner store’ retailers.
SeamonWhiteside worked with the Greenville Recreation District to design and engineer the GHS Swamp Rabbit Trail. The project completed in 2010 was constructed for $6.2 million. The three annual survey reports are available on the Greenville County Parks, Recreation and Tourism website.