Salisbury Renames the Infamous Needle Park AKA Gateway Park at Depot and E. Innes Streets: the Historical Mint Park. WHAT?

Posted on June 10, 2018

RFP Staff

♦ Saturday a location map in one of our crime articles caught a lot of reader’s attention.  Queries arrived about a new name appearing where Salisbury’s infamous “Needle Park” AKA “The Gateway Park” at East Innes Street and Depot Street.  Readers were alarmed that “Needle Park” AKA “The Gateway Park” was now being promoted as the “Historical Mint Park”. Really.  You know that very attractive park where if you had a legal concealed carry you might adventure down the steps from E. Innes Street to the replica of the Fountain that resided on the Square at the turn of the Century. Needle Park is a stone’s throw from the largest homeless shelter in North Carolina and a short walk from the Speedway gas station (formerly known as Wilco-Hess) where the parking lot is notorious for non-stop crime.

Needle Park gets it’s name from vagrants Jonesing from heroin, skied-out on booze, or under the influence of a mix of various controlled substances. Often the ground around the benches and fountain are littered by syringes. Hence the name “Needle Park”. Over the years some of the park’s people expired here from overdoses.

Location Needle Park, Salisbury, N.C.:

Keep in mind Needle Park is not good spot to walk though unless you want to ward off panhandlers. On occasion purses are snatched or someone is sucked in the vortex of wolf pack assault based on a dire need for fix. Busted bottles and rocks are weapons of choice among the park’s clientele. Cars parked in the Depot lot are open season for “rockers”

As for there being any real history for a park here–not happening. The park began around 2000. Before Needle Park existed there, it was gravel, weeds, and railroad Locust trees and two Biker bars or clubs. Note they call Mint Park historical and not historic likely because it doesn’t show up on the National Historic Register.

We hope no tourists or kids look at a tourist map and get lured to into Historical Mint Park. Shame on you City of Salisbury if you were behind this parks renaming.

At the Rowan Free Press we hope the day arrives when the clergy and a large gathering goes down the Innes Street steps to the Park and consecrates it as “Needle Park” in memory of all the human beings who suffered and died from Rowan County’s Opioid Epidemic. That would be real.

Previous RFP articles about Needle Park AKA Gateway Park in Salisbury, NC:

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