DARLINGTON, S.C. (WBTW) — An estimated $5.5 million project to revitalize Blue Street Ballfields at Darlington High School was introduced Tuesday in a three-way partnership between the City of Darlington, Darlington County School District, and the Darlington Area Recreation Department.

According to a release by Darlington County School District, the estimated $5.5 million project will encompass the renovation of existing ball fields and will add a high school league- certified baseball stadium and six tennis courts.

The projected date for the groundbreaking is in the spring of 2024. The collaborative effort aims to transform the area of Darlington High’s campus into a multi-sport facility to serve Darlington High School students and the greater Darlington community, the release said.

As part of the project, the existing Orange Street tennis courts will be converted into pickleball courts. The key features of the project include: a new baseball stadium, new six-court tennis complex, renovation of existing fields, new lighting and fencing, a new concession stand, a new paved parking lot, new restroom facilities, and an ADA compliant, according to the release.

The fields will be used by Darlington High during the high school sports seasons and the City and County will use the fields during off-seasons, according to the release.

“We’re excited about the collaborative efforts that will positively impact youth sports and Darlington High School student-athletes for many years to come,” DCSD Superintendent Dr. Tim Newman said. “This opportunity to centralize all sports fields at our high school not only brings convenience and accessibility but also reflects our commitment to strengthening the bonds that make our school district a true community.”

Darlington City Mayor Curtis Boyd said he is excited about the opportunity to continue to help reinvigorate the city.

“In 2020 the City of Darlington purchased land to build a sports complex,” Boyd said. “After COVID-19 changed the nation’s economy and caused prices to greatly escalate, the estimated cost was greater than $25 million, well over earlier projections. We then decided to work with the Darlington County School District to update the Blue Street ballfield complex for less than $6 million. This cooperative effort will save taxpayers tens of millions of dollars and provide citizens with an incredible area to enjoy sports.”

The Darlington County School District, the City of Darlington, and the Darlington Area Recreation Department are currently working together on the design and planning phases of the project. The plans will be presented to the Darlington County Board of Education and the Darlington City Council for approval before the end of 2024, the release said.

Count on News13 for updates on its progress.

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Taylor Ford is a digital journalist for News13. She joined the News13 team in January 2023. Taylor is a Florence native and covers the Pee Dee out of News13’s Florence Bureau. Read more of Taylor’s work here.