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mr. chips

corner of Gervais and Assembly

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I am new to this forum, but have enjoyed reading the topics and discussions. It is an exciting time for

Columbia, and it is great to see so many people who are interested in its future.

I have always wondered why the two ugly parking lots at the intersection of Gervais and Assembly Street, across from the State Capitol (on the West side), have remained as eyesores when the rest of downtown is sprucing up. I always thought of the potential for those two lots on each side of Gervais to be a kind of gateway to the center of downtown, connecting the restaurants/hotels/shops of the Vista with the state buildings, Main street and USC. Who owns those properties, and why do they not do something exciting with them?

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I am new to this forum, but have enjoyed reading the topics and discussions. It is an exciting time for

Columbia, and it is great to see so many people who are interested in its future.

I have always wondered why the two ugly parking lots at the intersection of Gervais and Assembly Street, across from the State Capitol (on the West side), have remained as eyesores when the rest of downtown is sprucing up. I always thought of the potential for those two lots on each side of Gervais to be a kind of gateway to the center of downtown, connecting the restaurants/hotels/shops of the Vista with the state buildings, Main street and USC. Who owns those properties, and why do they not do something exciting with them?

Ditto. Except for being new to the forum.

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Welcome to the forum, mr.chips! We look forward to your contributions. :thumbsup:

You have asked the million dollar question. That spot is prime property for a project that will serve as a link between Main and the Vista. I would also advocate a streetscaping/narrowing of Assembly as well, but at this point that's several years into the future.

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Welcome to the forum mr chips!

I heard that the owner of the lot on the SW corner of Assembly and Gervais is sitting on his land. If the fire station doesn't make it, that land could be assembled with the parcels behind it on the rest of the block to become something much larger. I think a nice signature mixed use midrise should go at that prominent intersection. You could easily get 5-7 stories and not block the state house dome.

I have no idea about the other one. I'd like to see something nice go there as well.

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Welcome Mr. Chips! I now have a strange urge for fried fish. Where's ol' Cedrics when you need them? LOL. The northwest corner of the block used to be the Market Restaurant, one of the nicest restaurants in Columbia at one time. Unfortunately it was torn down to make a parking lot. I have also wondered why nothing has been built on those lots; the intersection is one of the busiest in the state. Why don't we try to come up with an ideal use for those pieces of property?

I'll start: the northwest corner should be a hotel. Back in the 1780's, when Columbia was being built, that was the site of an Inn. If I'm not mistaken, it was the Inn George Washington stayed in when he visited Columbia in 1791. I would love to see something play upon that; it is also close enough to serve the convention center 3 blocks away.

The southwest corner is a little bit more difficult. It couldn't be much of an office building because of the worries about blocking the view of the state house. I'd like to see something creative there like a large fountain with multiple smaller fountains, scultures and other works of art. It would be a very popular place for downtown workers to have lunch.

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I like your suggestions, Waccamatt, about thinking of ideal uses for that location. I think it would be neat to have two architecturally-related buildings on either side of Gervais serving as a kind of "gate" to the uptown area of the city. I could see having two related "towers" (not too high to block the capitol building) to mark this important gateway. Or a park on each side of the street with an arch across Gervais that would become the symbol for Columbia, like Arch de Triomphe or the Eifel Tower. Its nice fantasizing...

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I like your suggestions, Waccamatt, about thinking of ideal uses for that location. I think it would be neat to have two architecturally-related buildings on either side of Gervais serving as a kind of "gate" to the uptown area of the city. I could see having two related "towers" (not too high to block the capitol building) to mark this important gateway. Or a park on each side of the street with an arch across Gervais that would become the symbol for Columbia, like Arch de Triomphe or the Eifel Tower. Its nice fantasizing...

I like the way you think, Mr. Chips, however, please don't call it uptown! Let Charlotte have that dumb designation for their midtown or downtown or center city or anything except UPtown.

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LOL, actually a few cities in the central Carolina piedmont call their downtowns "uptown," including Gaffney, Salisbury NC, and I think Anderson. It's kind of a popular term in this area.

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LOL, actually a few cities in the central Carolina piedmont call their downtowns "uptown," including Gaffney, Salisbury NC, and I think Anderson. It's kind of a popular term in this area.

Forgive me, KB, but I still think it sounds dumb.

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I like your suggestions, Waccamatt, about thinking of ideal uses for that location. I think it would be neat to have two architecturally-related buildings on either side of Gervais serving as a kind of "gate" to the uptown area of the city. I could see having two related "towers" (not too high to block the capitol building) to mark this important gateway. Or a park on each side of the street with an arch across Gervais that would become the symbol for Columbia, like Arch de Triomphe or the Eifel Tower. Its nice fantasizing...

ooooh, an archway over Gervais Street! I like it, I like it! I want to see your design!

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Let's see if we can get our expatriated sculptor, Blue Sky, to design something.

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Let's see if we can get our expatriated sculptor, Blue Sky, to design something.

Sounds good, let's come up with a name for this arch. I'll start: Arc de Coq de Combat.

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ooooh, an archway over Gervais Street! I like it, I like it! I want to see your design!

me too

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LOL, actually a few cities in the central Carolina piedmont call their downtowns "uptown," including Gaffney, Salisbury NC, and I think Anderson. It's kind of a popular term in this area.

Anderson's CBD 'downtown' .... but Greenwood is an Uptown though

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OK, I knew it was another Upstate city though.

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I would like to see a parking garage, hotel, or office building on those two corners with restaurant/store fronts on the street levels. :shades: And at the two corners statues, similar to those in chralotte, to be the gate keepers to the Vista and Corporate District of downtown Columbia.

charlotte_statue.jpg

charlotte_statue.jpg

statue.jpg

Cha_Trade_n_Tryon_statue.jpg

motherandchild.jpg

Something like those. Neither statue should be of a confederate soldier, a gamecock, nor strom thurmond! :whistling:

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I think that's a great idea. Rock Hill has four "Civitas" statues that, along with two pillars from an old Masonic temple that was torn down in Charlotte years ago, serves as a "Gateway," although the location is about a mile outside of downtown:

Civitas.jpg

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Thats exactly the concept I was thinking about. :yahoo: Those in Rock Hill are beautiful and I am always surprised :shok: when I see them when I go to visit my Aunt there.

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