GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – After decades of debate the future of County Square in downtown Greenville is starting to take shape.
Newly-released architectural prints are giving the public a look at the county’s vision for the area along University Ridge.
Developers say a $1,000,000,000 plan will take the existing 37+ acres and turn it into a state-of-the-art urban area.
The project’s first project will be a new $60,000,000 county building that sits along Church St.
A second phase calls for the development of commercial, residential, and recreational areas.
Council Chairman Butch Kirven says the county reached a deal with Atlanta-based developer RocaPoint Partners
Councilman Ennis Fant says through the planning process they’ve taken into consideration other ongoing downtown projects and addressed concerns of over-development.
Fant says, “we’re not looking at it, like, let’s build some more $300,000 condos. We’re looking at also including a mix of fair market and affordable housing units.”
Kirven adds, “We’re working together to make sure this is synchronized and enhancing other developments going on downtown.”
County officials say they won’t have to raise property taxes since they can take the money made selling the land to developers and cover the cost of constructing the new county building.
Chairman Kervin also touts what will happen when the development is turned over to private investors and companies. He says currently the land generates no tax revenue for the county but over the years new tax revenue is generated bringing the total estimated local economic impact to $1,000,000,000.
Two more votes by council and a public hearing still need to happen over the next several weeks.
Before the final vote in May, a public hearing will be held for anyone who wants to voice concerns or ask questions. That takes place May 15th at 6 p.m. inside council chambers at County Square.
An initial groundbreaking on the planned county building is estimated to begin in 12 to 18 months with the rest of the development to take place in the following years.
Here’s a statement from Phil Mays, principal with RocaPoint Partners:
“We are thrilled to have been selected for the redevelopment of County Square. There’s a tremendous opportunity to create a really special place for the residents and visitors of Greenville, as well as to contribute to the already robust local economy. We’re focused on delivering a walkable environment that supports local business growth, as well as provides a distinct gathering place – all without losing the charm so inherent of Greenville. We could not pass up this once-in-a-lifetime chance to truly make an impact on the future of Greenville County.”
RocaPoint is known for projects in and around Atlanta, including the mixed-use development HALCYON in Forsyth County, along with the PGA TOUR headquarters campus in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.
Foster & Partners of London, the firm that designed the renderings for the government building, also designed Apple, Inc. corporate headquarters in Silicon Valley.