Excitement is in the cool, fall Cecil County air as they prepare to begin construction on the county’s first regional park! With the property located between MD Route 272 and MD Route 273, just four miles from I-95 and six miles from US Route 40, this convenient 112 acre site is set to be a sure success.
The Calvert Regional Park property was purchased in 2008 with Program Open Space Grant Funding, a nationally recognized company which acquires outdoor open land and administers funds to local communities for the purpose of improving the quality of life for residents. Cecil County Department of Parks and Recreation Director, Clyde Van Dyke, shared that other funding for the project came from the County’s C.I.P. General Fund as well as a state bond secured by Delegate Rudolph. They also have formed a 501C3 to actively solicit public/corporate donations.
The project’s business plan is divided into three phases. Development of Phase I is expected to begin either early November or spring of 2015 and will include one synthetic turf field, four natural grass fields and a hiking trail. Phase II will include three more natural grass fields. Phases II/III will have dog parks, splash pads, an amphitheater, tennis courts, a skate park, etc and Phase III is when the event planning stage will begin. Should all go as planned, they anticipate Phase I will be completed by June 2015 and Van Dyke predicted, “If funding is provided, we hope to have complete build out by June 2018.”
Director Van Dyke also provided insight into some general plans for the completion of individual stages. He stated, “We will have a ribbon cutting after each phase is completed. If donations are provided that would cover naming rights to fields, we would certainly recognize those parties publically.”
According to the project’s business plan, other park features will include parking lots (both car and bus accessible), lights and bleachers for fields and portable bathrooms.
Though the event planning stage has not begun as of yet, they know the site will be used for sports tourism events and by local lacrosse, soccer, and football leagues. However, with the addition of dog parks, splash pads, and an amphitheater it is clear that the Calvert Regional Park will be a great place not only for the athletes of the area, but for all residents looking to enjoy all of the amenities Cecil’s first regional park will have to offer!