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About UrbanSoutherner

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  1. Thanks for the recommendation gsupstate!
  2. What is the best restaurant in the downtown Greenville area for a nice romantic dinner? I have been looking at the websites for Restaurant O, Devereaux's, Latitude, Larkin's on the River, and others. What do the Greenville residents who are familiar with these restaurants think? Thanks.
  3. The lack of historic fabric downtown is one of my biggest complaints about Charlotte. I like a lot about the city and have family roots there, but the city really bulldozed too much. My city of Altanta is not exactly a poster child for historic preservation, but it has still managed to save more of its downtown historic fabric than Charlotte (and without sacrificing progress might I add). That said, I do like a lot of the new architecture in downtown Charlotte. I certainly agree that many and perhaps most people like the new, but most people are suburban anyway. I believe that most peo
  4. I think NASCAR is currently visiting Atlanta this week, so I doubt they are making a decision yet.
  5. I do wonder if the city really wanted to annex North Charleston in the late 1960s/very early 1970s when it may have had a chance prior to the area's separate incorporation. I would guess that North Charleston was a "navy town" at the time with a lot of what some might have called "seediness" so to speak. I mean all the naval property would have been tax-exempt and would have added nothing to the tax base. There were not a lot of upper income residential areas I do not think at the time in the area. I do wonder what kind of tax base it would have provided for the City of Charleston prior to lat
  6. And even after spending significant amounts of tax payer dollars on urban infrastructure and projects and picking fights over annexation, Mayor Riley winds up being very popular and easily re-elected. I think most Charlestonians realize that their city has been made much stronger and healthier thanks in no small part to Riley's leadership. The city has a urban redevelopment agenda most cities could only dream of and as you pointed out, a current city boundary that guarantees continued growth in tax base and population for the foreseeable future.
  7. I think it is due to one primary reason - Mayor Joseph P. Riley. Riley provides leadership for the City of Charleston that Columbia and Greenville both sorely lack. I think Charleston has a strong mayor form of government where the mayor really is the city's exective, whereas Columbia has a weak mayor form of government where a city manager runs things more so than the mayor. At any rate, Riley has been a great leader for Charleston, and I think he is largely why the city has been so aggressive annexing.
  8. I think the downtown layout and feel between Orangeburg and Spartanburg are similar, though obviously Spartanburg is larger and more prosperous with larger and newer buildings. But they both have a main street cutting across a square with a metal statue on a pedestal. The main street then angles somewhat before it continues if I am not mistaken. It is a similar layout and somewhat unique. Otherise, Orangeburg and Spartanburg are similar in that they both have confined city limits and have fallen precipitously in the state city rankings since 1960. Both end in "burg" and have a department of
  9. Rome is a great little city with a nice downtown. Another Georgia town with a great downtown is Americus (the county seat of Sumter County where Jimmy Carter's Plains is located). Small town main street programs typically do several things like streetscaping, facade improvements, upper floor residential apartments over the first floor retail, the "right" mix of nitch businesses, and marketing with special events. Do you know if Orangeburg has facade improvements grants or low interest loans for facade improvements? I think facade improvements and upper level residential are really needed. I
  10. Orangeburg has some potential. The central part of the city runs from the Edisto Memorial Gardens and other parks along the Edisto River eastward through downtown and then on to SC State and Claflin Universities. The city's downtown area has some nice historic buildings. Unfortunately, many of them are vacant or underutilized. Only in recent years has the city really become proactive with downtown revitalization (streetscaping, etc.). The county is also trying to push an economic development vision of the county as a distribution and logistics center building on the presence of I-26 and I-95 a
  11. It does seem like nothing more than a tool for speculation. If you are only paying interest, then you must be betting that the price will appreciate and you can make some profit that way. It seems way too hokey to last.
  12. Watching the boom in intown Atlanta, I think a lot of it is indeed the interest only mortgages. I saw a figure that around half of all new mortgages in Georgia now are interest only, and much of that is probably in metro Atlanta. You also have people moving in from other regions of the country where housing has been higher for longer. To them, these prices in many cases seem low since they are used to higher prices. Beyond those forces, I am baffled by it as well. I wonder if it sustainable.
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