CORBIN, Ky. (WKYT) - A lot of people visit southern Kentucky just to see a really big water fall, so that’s exactly why Governor Matt Bevin chose Cumberland Falls as the backdrop to announce a $50 million investment to upgrade facilities, campgrounds and other areas at Kentucky’s state parks.
"There probably is no state park in Kentucky more nationally and globally famous than Cumberland Falls,” said Bevin.
State leaders began an endeavor to upgrade Kentucky’s state parks about three years ago, pumping in about $18 million of funding to fix everything from kitchens to campgrounds. But some say that was just a drop in the bucket as far as what the parks needed.
“When we came here three years ago we faced a $240 million deferred maintenance that we inherited,” said Don Parkinson, Secretary of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinet.
Since those initial improvements, tourism officials say they’ve already seen a jump in park visits and overnight stays at Kentucky’s 17 lodges.
On top of their $50 million investment announced Thursday, Kentucky leaders say they hope to add another $100 million in a bonding initiative by next year.