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The State of Downtown Retail


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I remember seeing a "Rick Erwin concept"  on a previous version of the Camperdown site plan, along with O-Ku before it became Camp.  I posted the link in the Camperdown thread but the links have since been updated.  If I remember correctly it was above the Bank of America overlooking Main and Japanese Dogwood Lane.  That would make sense since there is an outdoor patio area on that level.  Also, one of the previous chefs at Rick's west end location said they had been looking at Camperdown since they broke ground.  

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35 minutes ago, greenvilleguy said:

I remember seeing a "Rick Erwin concept"  on a previous version of the Camperdown site plan, along with O-Ku before it became Camp.  I posted the link in the Camperdown thread but the links have since been updated.  If I remember correctly it was above the Bank of America overlooking Main and Japanese Dogwood Lane.  That would make sense since there is an outdoor patio area on that level.  Also, one of the previous chefs at Rick's west end location said they had been looking at Camperdown since they broke ground.  

Can’t say I am surprised. Too many food establishments at Camperdown and not enough retail.

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https://upstatebusinessjournal.com/square-feet/windsor-aughtry-proposes-new-use-for-greenville-ice-on-main-site/
 

“The proposal, to be discussed in an upcoming council work session, would bring two restaurants from the Indigo Road Hospitality Group, O-Ku (sushi) and Indaco (wood-fired pizza and Italian), to the space occupied by Rick Erwin’s Nantucket Seafood. With the outdoor space, they plan to use one-third for an outdoor venue with dining, a bar, outdoor seating and a fireplace.”

79570014-1DCA-492F-AEA7-CA146534FACD.webp

Edited by GVLover
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Wow, that would be an incredible loss for the public IMO. I didn't realize the city didn't own that land; I wonder how much it would cost for the city to buy it. I get that ICE on Main is only for two months but it is a fantastic asset and a much better draw than another restaurant; again, just my opinion. Is there another location an ice rink could go; Camperdown Plaza maybe?

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27 minutes ago, distortedlogic said:

Wow, that would be an incredible loss for the public IMO. I didn't realize the city didn't own that land; I wonder how much it would cost for the city to buy it. I get that ICE on Main is only for two months but it is a fantastic asset and a much better draw than another restaurant; again, just my opinion. Is there another location an ice rink could go; Camperdown Plaza maybe?

Looks like it might relocate to the Grand Bohemian: 

https://www.postandcourier.com/greenville/business/last-year-for-ice-on-main-at-greenville-courtyard-where-new-restaurants-are-planned/article_ba690c90-4bd8-11ec-ad7b-ef4740c3083a.html

I do agree with Aughtry that outside of Ice on Main, the plaza area is pretty dead the rest of the year. 

Edited by gman430
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40 minutes ago, gman430 said:

Looks like it might relocate to the Grand Bohemian: 

https://www.postandcourier.com/greenville/business/last-year-for-ice-on-main-at-greenville-courtyard-where-new-restaurants-are-planned/article_ba690c90-4bd8-11ec-ad7b-ef4740c3083a.html

I do agree with Aughtry that outside of Ice on Main, the plaza area is pretty dead the rest of the year. 

Thanks for the link. I am trying to picture where near the GB it would go. I agree that space isn't fully utilized most of the year, and from a business standpoint it isn't maximized, but it is sure a great place for the rink. I really do hope the city can find a good place to continue having the rink, that would be a big loss.

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29 minutes ago, gman430 said:

Rivers Edge building isn’t even ten years old. Not sure what issues are going on with the the structure but hopefully they get resolved and fixed and fast. 

I saw the caution tape blocking the whole front entrance and plaza.  Did part of the facade fall?

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22 minutes ago, Skyliner said:

I saw the caution tape blocking the whole front entrance and plaza.  Did part of the facade fall?

Not sure but Limoncello is closed until further notice due to whatever is going on with the building. 

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I can confirm that a portion of the building has fallen on the front just above and to the right of the Limoncello sign. Looks like it was decorative concrete and nothing that affects the structural integrity of the building luckily. However, if people were standing underneath that portion of the building when it fell they could have been seriously hurt if not killed. The outer portion of concrete where the black arrow is pointing at is what fell: 

76AC1F72-5617-403C-A93B-75DCD0FDED39.jpeg

Edited by gman430
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Not sure if it's been mentioned yet, but it looks like the Coast Apparel store across from the AC Hotel is closed.  I rode by today and the lights were off and the shingle sign has been removed.  I saw on their facebook page that the Augusta Rd store closed in August.  Also, the brand is no longer on the Delta Apparel website that I could see.  Maybe Salt Life or one of the other brands could fill the space?

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1 hour ago, greenvilleguy said:

Not sure if it's been mentioned yet, but it looks like the Coast Apparel store across from the AC Hotel is closed.  I rode by today and the lights were off and the shingle sign has been removed.  I saw on their facebook page that the Augusta Rd store closed in August.  Also, the brand is no longer on the Delta Apparel website that I could see.  Maybe Salt Life or one of the other brands could fill the space?

I’m surprised half of these retailers downtown survive. I never see anybody shopping inside any of them. Sadly, downtown just doesn’t have the energy it used to. Kind of boring now really unless you like eating at overpriced restaurants. You can only visit Falls Park so many times until it finally just becomes a meh moment. No wonder Husk, Liberty, Coast, Brooks Brothers, Lynn Strong, Cooks Station and other places are either moving or closing up left and right. Doesn’t help that the city is dead set on not wanting national retailers and restaurants downtown also according to the Greenville Snooze. City Council needs to stop with all of the red tape. Otherwise they are going to continue to lose tenants downtown. 

Edited by gman430
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12 hours ago, gman430 said:

I’m surprised half of these retailers downtown survive. I never see anybody shopping inside any of them. Sadly, downtown just doesn’t have the energy it used to. Kind of boring now really unless you like eating at overpriced restaurants. You can only visit Falls Park so many times until it finally just becomes a meh moment. No wonder Husk, Liberty, Coast, Brooks Brothers, Lynn Strong, Cooks Station and other places are either moving or closing up left and right. Doesn’t help that the city is dead set on not wanting national retailers and restaurants downtown also according to the Greenville Snooze. City Council needs to stop with all of the red tape. Otherwise they are going to continue to lose tenants downtown. 

There is absolutely nothing boring about downtown. Visiting Falls Park never gets old. I am there several times a week and it is always bustling with lots of folks, on the streets and in the stores. 

Edited by gman
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9 hours ago, gman430 said:

I’m surprised half of these retailers downtown survive. I never see anybody shopping inside any of them. Sadly, downtown just doesn’t have the energy it used to. Kind of boring now really unless you like eating at overpriced restaurants. You can only visit Falls Park so many times until it finally just becomes a meh moment. No wonder Husk, Liberty, Coast, Brooks Brothers, Lynn Strong, Cooks Station and other places are either moving or closing up left and right. Doesn’t help that the city is dead set on not wanting national retailers and restaurants downtown also according to the Greenville Snooze. City Council needs to stop with all of the red tape. Otherwise they are going to continue to lose tenants downtown. 

I can't agree with you there.  Chain retail and chain restaurants are boring, and you can already get your fill of them on all of Greenville's myriad sprawlways.  Once chains infiltrate they always just end up driving the rents up to the point that nobody but chains can afford it, and kill off the local businesses.  I don't go downtown to go to a mall.  If I wanted that, I'd just go to the Haywood Mall.  

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23 minutes ago, hauntedheadnc said:

I can't agree with you there.  Chain retail and chain restaurants are boring, and you can already get your fill of them on all of Greenville's myriad sprawlways.  Once chains infiltrate they always just end up driving the rents up to the point that nobody but chains can afford it, and kill off the local businesses.  I don't go downtown to go to a mall.  If I wanted that, I'd just go to the Haywood Mall.  

I haven't studied rents downtown, but imagine that rents are already sky high relative to the Sprawlurbs.   Anything operating downtown must already have amazing profit margins to stay afloat.  For example Table 301 had some cool concept restaurants that couldn't make it in an environment with too high a percentage of teetotalers.

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1 hour ago, bikeoid said:

I haven't studied rents downtown, but imagine that rents are already sky high relative to the Sprawlurbs.   Anything operating downtown must already have amazing profit margins to stay afloat.  For example Table 301 had some cool concept restaurants that couldn't make it in an environment with too high a percentage of teetotalers.

Downtown rents would be high, but chains with a nationwide presence backing them up can still pay even more.  Even if, for example, Smoke on the Water is killing it, it still doesn't have a thousand Applebee's franchises buoying it up.  And that is to say nothing of how a district with nothing but chains is still boring.  Times Square, for instance, is easily the dullest place in Manhattan.  It's a bunch of chain restaurants and billboards with a lot of fake buzz and pseudo-excitement.  Greenville's got a better thing going with a large selection of local businesses that still, for now, outnumber the chains downtown.   

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On 11/22/2021 at 10:24 PM, distortedlogic said:

Thanks for the link. I am trying to picture where near the GB it would go. I agree that space isn't fully utilized most of the year, and from a business standpoint it isn't maximized, but it is sure a great place for the rink. I really do hope the city can find a good place to continue having the rink, that would be a big loss.

GB will have an open greenspace  in front of the hotel where there used to be a small parking lot/turn around.  Not sure how it compares size-wise to the current location at the Courtyard Marriot.   I would think that there would a greater need to make the perimeter walls of the rink more aesthetic in such an open location and if done well, could be really great.   It would lose the visibility it has now which could hurt it's business and getting there and parking/walking might not be as convenient either.

image.png.680ee5f6a4530bb78a77808cdce0f604.png

 

 

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16 hours ago, gman430 said:

I’m surprised half of these retailers downtown survive. I never see anybody shopping inside any of them. Sadly, downtown just doesn’t have the energy it used to. Kind of boring now really unless you like eating at overpriced restaurants. You can only visit Falls Park so many times until it finally just becomes a meh moment. No wonder Husk, Liberty, Coast, Brooks Brothers, Lynn Strong, Cooks Station and other places are either moving or closing up left and right. Doesn’t help that the city is dead set on not wanting national retailers and restaurants downtown also according to the Greenville Snooze. City Council needs to stop with all of the red tape. Otherwise they are going to continue to lose tenants downtown. 

I agree with everything said regarding retail but I never get tired of the falls, the trails, checking out what is going on at the Camperdown or up by Aloft.   I wasn't aware of the city not wanting national retailers, that is a big mistake (although they seemed ok with anthropologie.)  We could use a few more retail anchors drawing more than just folks supporting high margin alcohol sales.   One thing lacking in the city's planning is secondary and side street support for retail and restaurants.  These would have lower rents (hopefully) and coexist with larger high rent national retail chains.  There could be a symbiotic relationship between national and local retail if set up well.

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21 minutes ago, gvegascple said:

I agree with everything said regarding retail but I never get tired of the falls, the trails, checking out what is going on at the Camperdown or up by Aloft.   I wasn't aware of the city not wanting national retailers, that is a big mistake (although they seemed ok with anthropologie.)  We could use a few more retail anchors drawing more than just folks supporting high margin alcohol sales.   One thing lacking in the city's planning is secondary and side street support for retail and restaurants.  These would have lower rents (hopefully) and coexist with larger high rent national retail chains.  There could be a symbiotic relationship between national and local retail if set up well.

I don't think the City is opposed to national retailers. However, they're focusing their recruitment efforts on regional chains and businesses that are looking for their second or third location, as opposed to a 100th location. 

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On 11/22/2021 at 10:24 PM, distortedlogic said:

Thanks for the link. I am trying to picture where near the GB it would go. I agree that space isn't fully utilized most of the year, and from a business standpoint it isn't maximized, but it is sure a great place for the rink. I really do hope the city can find a good place to continue having the rink, that would be a big loss.

Agreed, but even without the ice-rink that space is a meeting point for a lot of people to sit and talk in a non-commercial environment. Kids use it as a playground on the weekends - especially during the farmers market. It helps that public restrooms are right there, too. Except of lacking some shade at certain times in the summer, it's a real oasis. 

Check it out on Saturday mornings or during  other special events in other locations downtown.  A lot of people to congregate there before, after, and during the events. I see people on the weekends taking a break there as they stroll Main St. Overall, a great example of why cities need some small-ish pocket parks sprinkled around retail and restaurant dominated areas. 

I wish the city would buy what is left after the restaurant addition. Just a lot of different organic uses that will help surrounding commercial businesses be more attractive. Add some shade and it makes a great place to stop and take a break in the middle of the day in the the city. Makes Greenville more attractive to visitors. 

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