People calling for time out on proposed East Cooper stadium
MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) —
The Charleston County School District has a lot of major projects in the works over the next several years. But none has garnered more attention than the East of the Cooper Stadium set to go up in Carolina Park.
At a special meeting Wednesday night, residents voiced concerns to district officials over the $18 million facility.
"I'm not against the stadium, I'm against the regional stadium,” said Mary Callaghan. She lives in the Carolina Park neighborhood, not far from where the 6,000 seat stadium is slated to go. She's one of many worried it will change the quiet community for good.
"The impact of a stadium that large on our community, three high schools using it, three sports plus band plus events on weekends, that area will never have any downtime."
Traffic, noise, light pollution and pedestrian safety are all a concern. District officials said they've worked through the list to address those issues.
The 14-acre site will have 2,350 parking spots, crosswalks and lights designed to minimize spillover. Their current projections figure traffic will be less than that of a normal school day. But not everyone is convinced the district's plan will be as clean as the renderings.
"They're going to clog the traffic circle and it's going to be really a perfect storm of pedestrian traffic and people coming either way on the traffic circle,” said one Mt. Pleasant man who wished to remain anonymous.
Callaghan, who is also a relator, said it will, no doubt, affect home prices and quality of life.
"I think it all starts out optimistic, everything is promised and it's done those people go away and we have to live with the consequences,” Callaghan said. “I'm very afraid of those consequences."
Despite the backlash, the school district is still moving forward, they said the stadium is expected to be ready by Fall of 2018. Several people at Wednesday’s meeting said they're prepared to file a lawsuit to try and stop it.
Another community meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, April 25th at 6 p.m. at Laing Middle School.