GREENVILLE — Members of the Darke County Parks Board are preparing to close a deal to purchase a property on Ohio Street.
Darke County Parks Director Roger Van Frank updated board members on plans to purchase the property, which is located at 404 N. Ohio St., during a recent monthly meeting. The property was formerly the site of Greenville-based business Spencer Landscaping, which relocated to a new facility on U.S. 571 in May of 2016.
The park district plans to use a $200,000 grant from the Ohio Department of Public Works to fund the purchase, along with a $60,000 loan from Second National Bank in Greenville. In addition, approximately $13,000 already paid in rent for the property will be applied toward the eventual $250,000 purchase price.
Leftover funds will be used to pursue various improvements to the property, including possibly updating the facility’s restrooms and installing a new heat source for the coming winter. The deal for purchase of the Ohio Street property is tentatively expected to close Tuesday.
Now called the Bish Discovery Center, the property sits near the entrance to Alice Bish Park on Ohio Street. The five acres of land encompassing the park, as well as the adjoining walking trail along Greenville Creek, were donated in May 1994 by Chalmer Bish and named in honor of Bish’s wife. The park also serves as the trailhead of the Greenville Creek Trail, which extends from Ohio Street to Greenville City Park.
A grand opening celebration for the newly acquired property will be held July 22 by Friends of the Darke County Parks with chicken dinner being served at noon and the ceremony taking place at 2 p.m. Members of the Bish family will be present for the event.
Van Frank also updated the board on plans to begin phase five of the Tecumseh Trail project. The purpose of the project is to bring outdoor enthusiasts to Darke County by building a continous biking and walking trail running between Piqua, Covington, Bradford, Gettysburg, Greenville and Union City. The currently constructed portion of the trail connects Bradford and Gettysburg to a point near Greenville, just south of Bear’s Mill.
Phase Five of the project would connect portions of the route along U.S. 127 to Sebring-Warner Road and Sebring-Warner to Sater Street, near the EUM Church Worship Center in Greenville. The board voted unanimously to accept the plans as presented by Van Frank.
The writer may be reached at 937-569-4315. To join the conversation and get updates on Facebook, search Advocate360. For more features online, go to dailyadvocate.com