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Florence Developments

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A few Florence updates:

The performing arts center downtown is opening September 9th:

http://www.fmupac.org/

Otis Elevator is opening a manufacturing facility in Florence:

http://www2.scnow.co...nce-ar-2293575/

Local retailers in Florence County can open before 1:30 on Sunday since hotel tax revenue surpassed $900,000.00 in 2011:

http://www2.scnow.co...-bl-ar-2271259/

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http://www2.scnow.co...ace-ar-2772535/

http://www2.scnow.com/list/florence-facade/gallery/

Things are proceeding with DT Florence. The Performing Arts Center is now open. The Hotel/restaurant project is on track, and the new museum is proceeding as well. [i am still amazed that they have financing on that deal. That project is very 'pioneer' in my opinion.]

The link shows the potential of fascade renovations, which are sorely needed. The 100 block of West Evans really needs this work. They also need to repave that block like YESTERDAY. It is in terrible shape, and that would not be that expensive to do.

I drove through the area last weekend, and there are two new restaurants in the 100 South Dargan block.

Edited by vicupstate
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Thanks for posting. I which the parking garages could have been built at teh rear of the campus. They hid the attractive primary buildings. The one on the corner of Church and Cheves isn't as bad, but the one between the Tower and the Pavilion will nearly completely block the new building. Plus it creates a wall of parking for nearly the entire Cheves Street frontage.

If the Greenland Park building had been built elsewhere in the '80's, they probably could have put the garages in back.

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This is a little off topic, but relevant to Florence. Interesting comparison on tax rates. Florence's are mega-low. The city does need to spruce up and invest in itself some. I dont know that now is the right time, given the economy, though.

They should pursue annexation very aggressively however, the tiny amount of taxes would likely be completely offset with lower water/sewer rates and fire insurance. Not to mention the added services.

To it's credit, the city limits have expanded very significantly in the last decade or so, relatively speaking, but given these numbers, there should be a stampede to expand the limits, IMO.

http://www2.scnow.com/news/pee-dee/2011/dec/12/florence-city-council-takes-tax-debate-ar-2854572/

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http://www2.scnow.com/news/pee-dee/2011/dec/13/fowler-protests-florence-county-property-purchases-ar-2861782/

Florence County is moving forward with land acquition for a future Judicial Center across from the City-County Complex. No word on when design and other construction work will begin. I hope they spend enough to get a decent-looking building. If the private sector is going to invest in something 'nicer than it has to be', then the public sector has to set an example too.

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The same group that is doing the ew Hotel/restaurant downtown are now converting the Kimbrells building into Offices. Great to see that major building being brought to life. An art gallery in the Kimbrells building will move nearby.

http://www2.scnow.com/news/pee-dee/2012/sep/07/art-trail-gallery-finds-new-downtown-florence-spot-ar-4501601/

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http://www.scnow.com...19bb30f31a.html

The city is looking strongly at leasing a private building so that they can consolidate all city offices there, and vacate the City-County Complex. This would also allow the county to use the vacated space for much needed judicial space. I guess the City County Complex would essentially now be the Florence County Courthouse.

Edited by vicupstate

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http://www.scnow.com...19bb30f31a.html

The city is looking strongly at leasing a private building so that they can consolidate all city offices there, and vacate the City-County Complex. This would also allow the county to use the vacated space for much needed judicial space. I guess the City County Complex would essentially now be the Florence County Courthouse.

City Council approved this plan on first reading, so it looks as though it will happen. At teh end of a 20 year lease, the city will own the property.

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Great article and photos of the Restaurant/Hotel project on West Evans. It sounds like a top notch project on the details. There are about 5 other buildings just in this block that have new renovation plans going before the city.

The city REALLY needs to repave the street itself. Lots of loose pebbles/rock and it looks terrible. A small cost for a significant impact would be possible.

 

http://www.scnow.com/news/local/article_60383b9c-5d12-11e2-8c65-0019bb30f31a.html

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More info. on the aftermentioned renovations:

 

http://www.scnow.com/news/local/article_9c3a08cc-5ddb-11e2-81f0-0019bb30f31a.html

 

 

There are MANY more buildings getting work than I mentioned before.  AND the street is about to be repaired/improved as well.  Not sure how the city got the owners to do so much work, but it appears much improvement is coming.

Edited by vicupstate
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...sad that the train mural at the old Woolworth building in downtown Florence is too expensive to repair and will have go. The mural was one of a few markers (and only mural) that caught my eye when walking around Florence and learning a bit more about the city, so named in honor of Florence Harllee, daughter W.W. Harllee, president of the Wilmington & Manchester Railroad.  

 

During the first American Civil War Florence stayed busy transporting many troops, artillery and supplies on to Charleston, Savannah and Richmond and carried wounded Confederate soldiers to Florence’s Wayside Hospital, and brought captured Union soldiers to the Florence Stockade. 

 

In the 1940s, Florence was the largest rail station in South Carolina, with 14 passenger trains serving the station every day.

 

 

FLORENCE, SC (FLO)

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Florence was part of the original townships laid out by the Lords of Proprieters in 1719, but the town remained thinly populated until Florence became a railroad terminal at the juncture of three lines: the Wilmington & Manchester, the North Eastern and the Cheraw & Darlington.

 

 

The part about the Lord's Proprietor's sounds wrong to me.  Florence didn't exist in any form until the 1850's to my knowledge, when the RR came.

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