Along with baseball, restaurants and shopping, Riverside Village will offer a place for a little leisure time at the planned riverfront park.

The park will be overlooking the Savannah River and will be just steps off the Greeneway.

One feature planned for the center of the park is a 600-seat amphitheater – designed for small concerts and as a place for local artists to play. The park will also feature a Greeneway bypass around the amphitheater, water features and a large sycamore tree that was saved when Riverside Village was started.

Rick Meyer, director of the city’s Parks, Recreation and Tourism department, said the the amphitheater is “not designed for a big concert – you’ve got SRP Park right there, so you don’t need that – but for local artists, for plays, stuff like that.”

During their May 6 meeting, Meyer presented an update on where the project stands. The two bids the city received both stand at just over $3 million, and the city only has $1.4 million budgeted. Meyer said the next steps include negotiating with the engineering firm, Benesch, and the architects, as well as meeting with potential contractors.

“I think the best case scenario is somewhere in the middle, you know, I think you seek additional funding for this project, but you also make some cuts,” Meyer said.

Some of the more big-ticket items in the park include towers on either side of the main entry, a splash pad and shade shelters. Meyer said things taken away for the first phase could be added back later.

Meyer described the park as a “multigenerational facility” for kids to seniors and in between. He said the park is designed to be a place to read a book or have lunch when the amphitheater isn’t in use.

“You could sit in the amphitheater and look at the river and just have a peaceful scene with the water features in front of you,” he said.

The future park hasn’t yet been named and is still a ways away – Meyer said the contractor wants six to eight months to build once everything is finalized.

Lindsey Hodges is a general assignment reporter at the Aiken Standard and North Augusta Star. Follow her on Twitter at @LindseyNHodges. 

Lindsey is the North Augusta reporter at the Aiken Standard and North Augusta Star. She graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2017, and grew up in Hodges, SC.