New Improvements Made to Isle of Palms County Park Designed to Improve Accessibility

ISLE OF PALMS, SC (WCSC) – The onset of spring is fast approaching, and those hoping to spend those warmer days at the beach will see further improvements in the Isle of Palms County Park which are designed to make the beach and the park more accessible to everyone.

Construction on these improvements began last fall and was recently completed, according to officials with the Charleston County Parks and Recreation Commission.

There are now seven accessible car parking spaces and four accessible van parking spaces in the park that are all fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, Recreation Director Steve Hutton said.

Improvements have also been made to the Park Center ramp and stairs to bring them up to current ADA standards. An updated handrail system has been put in place that will last longer and require less maintenance, according to documents from the Charleston County Parks and Recreation Commission.

Accessible parking, route improvements, stairs, ramps, handrails, and other updates are all part of Isle of Palms County Park Phase 1 improvements. In total, the upgrades cost around $220,000, Hutton says.

“We are absolutely committed to making sure we are as accessible as possible for all of our residents,” Hutton said. “We don’t want to serve a small segment of the community. We want to serve everyone who wants to be able to come to our beach parks, day parks or natural areas. We believe this is essential.

While these changes may not seem major, they can have a huge impact for those who want to take advantage of amenities there, according to Hutton.

“While these improvements are called for by the ADA, improved curbs, accessible routes, ramps, etc. benefit parents with strollers, customers with fishing carts, etc., it is not so not just wheelchair users,” he says.

This is the first major capital project that is part of Charleston County Parks’ 11-year plan to improve accessibility throughout the system and address accessibility barriers for people wishing to use the parks, according to Hutton.

Next fall and winter, further improvements will be made to Isle of Palms County Park as part of Phase 2 of the project, including replacing the beach access ramp and adding from an observation station, Hutton said.

Other accessibility options currently available in the park include accessible picnic tables under shaded structures, accessible restrooms, and beach wheelchairs.

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