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emerging.me

Columbia Area Developments

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Yeah the Vista needs a few more ammenities such as a movie cinema, Barnes & Noble, & maybe a central plaza around the convention center, other things that you see out off of Harbison Blvd. or Two Notch. I think it will come when the residential developments around the area are completed (Canalside, R-Campus, W. Cola river developments, Bull St. projects, etc..)

I definately wish I had some money I would definately invest in the riverfront area.

Edited by The_sandlapper

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I wonder if the Bull St project and their aspirations of revitalizing N Main will pull the center of gravity towards that area and cause more devlopment between assembly and Bull and Elmwood?

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I think it depends on the type of development they intend to do with Bull st. If they plan to build some entertainment venues and a grocery store or something I could see it pulling some development away.

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Well I meant that if there were a high residential populatio there, would it encourage the redevelopment of the less attractive parts of Sumter, Calhoun, Elmwood, Marion, and that area. Sumter and Main st at that end are particularly unattractive.

I dont mean large entertainment venues, that obviuosly will stay in the Vista, but maybe restaurants and grocery stores and drug stores, things like that. Elmwood would be a prime location for any business like that

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Well I meant that if there were a high residential populatio there, would it encourage the redevelopment of the less attractive parts of Sumter, Calhoun, Elmwood, Marion, and that area. Sumter and Main st at that end are particularly unattractive.

I dont mean large entertainment venues, that obviuosly will stay in the Vista, but maybe restaurants and grocery stores and drug stores, things like that. Elmwood would be a prime location for any business like that

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

When the current State Hospital grounds are developed, it would be a prime location for some retail and some restuarants as there is a sizable population base in the vicinity and it is also close to Palmetto Richland Memorial Hospital and their 4000+ employees.

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When the current State Hospital grounds are developed, it would be a prime location for some retail and some restuarants as there is a sizable population base in the vicinity and it is also close to Palmetto Richland Memorial Hospital and their 4000+ employees.

Definitely. I think it'd be huge with Elmwood Park residents in the evenings. And the lunch crowd at any restaurants would be tremendous -- slammed with hospital staff. No Name Deli right near there does huge business.

Edited by emerging.me

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With the new Walmart plaza and Woodhill plaza, does anyone think that the Garners Ferry area will be the next sprawling area of Columbia? Or should I say the next Harbison of Columbia?

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I think that Garner's Ferry and that direction will see a significant boom. It was only within the past 10 years or so that 77 was completed through there, so it is the last area to see an interstate. I have my doubts as to whether or not it will reach the extent of Harbison though :)

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It was completed in the early 80's I think. The section between I-20 and I-26 is the newest. You can still see maps on TV (on the news or TWC, etc) that don't have this segment. I think it was completed in the early 90s? Maybe someone who has been here longer can verify that.

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I believe it was completed about 12 years ago with the last stretch being between percival and Jackson Blvd. I know my first speeding ticket was on I-77 where 77 ended at percival at the time, I think it opened a few months later.... I am only 27 so it hasnt been that long.

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With the new Walmart plaza and Woodhill plaza, does anyone think that the Garners Ferry area will be the next sprawling area of Columbia? Or should I say the next Harbison of Columbia?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Opening I-77 opened up the Woodhill area to more development because of the highway traffic and the additional access it brought. Garners Ferry will not sprawl to the extent that Harbison has and the NE is doing currently. That is chiefly because the schools are not as good in that area and therefore residential development has largely bypassed it (relatively speaking of course). Retail follows rooftops, so while there was a spurt of growth initially with the completion of 77, the residential population is not growing enough to support a significant increase in commercial properties there.

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Update on office space downtown

Office complex planned

Project will add 350,000 feet of office space downtown

By JIM DuPLESSIS

Staff Writer

Columbia

Edited by The_sandlapper

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Fantastic. Normally I'd be irritateb at a buliding that large bulig built so short, but I think this one will look great. Don't want to obstruct the view from accross the river :) I can't wait to see some renderings.

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Fantastic. Normally I'd be irritateb at a buliding that large bulig built so short, but I think this one will look great. Don't want to obstruct the view from accross the river :) I can't wait to see some renderings.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I would prefer to see another skyscraper in the CBD, but more Vista development is good too. BTW, there is a height restriction in the Vista. I want to say it is something like 80 or 100 feet so that the view of the State House is not obstructed from across the river.

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You're right :) It will have to blend in with the Vista. Maybe it will look like an old mill (eg the State Museum)

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Don't you think it can blend in with the Vista without it looking like an old mill? What do you think about bringing something that may remind you of the past, but bridges the past with the future (somthing nostalgic).

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For those who are curious here is the state of the city address lots of interesting points highlited by Coble. It would be nice to see if anything can be done about the multiple municipalities thing. I doubt it though since everyplace wants to have its own piece of the pie, no matter how small it is.

'State of the City Speech'

Mayor Bob Coble

State of the City Speech

February 10, 2005

Thank you Charlie, and thank you all for being here tonight. I would like to recognize the members of Columbia City Council who are here: E.W. Cromartie, Anne Sinclair, Hamilton Osbourne, Sam Davis, Tameika Devine, and Daniel Rickenmann I also want to recognize my wife Beth who is here.

The city has hundreds of hard working employees whose dedication to our city makes Columbia a great place to live and work. I would ask all of our city employees present tonight to stand and be recognized. Thank you all.

Our city is blessed to have the tremendous leadership of our City Manager. Charles Austin has brought stability and a new sense of purpose to our City. Chief Austin, thank you for your leadership and continued ability to bring us together and move us forward.

In Columbia, I am proud to say our relationship with our neighborhoods and neighborhood leaders is strong. Everything we do in Columbia is measured against how it improves our neighborhoods. Tonight we have invited our neighborhood Presidents to be here, and I would ask now that they stand and be recognized for their commitment to their neighborhoods and to our city.

Current State of our City

Ladies and gentleman, tonight I am proud to say that the State of our City is strong and growing stronger every day. Last year at the State of the City, I outlined Columbia's renaissance over the last decade. We have without question made progress that is unprecedented in Columbia's history. We have before us unparalleled historic opportunities. However, we have much work to do. We have unresolved problems, and we face many new challenges.

2004 saw our renaissance continue. From the Main Street construction to the Meridian Building, the First Citizens Bank Headquarters, and the streetscapings on Lady Street to Two Notch Road to Five Points to Farrow Road, 2004 was a year of renewal.

At last year's State of the City, we placed creating jobs and expanding Columbia's economic infrastructure as the city's biggest challenge and number one priority. From 2002 to 2003 the Columbia region lost 10,000 jobs. In 2004 that trend reversed itself. We increased jobs and now rank 88th out of 318 metro areas for job growth. According to the South Carolina Employment Security Commission, in the last year, the Columbia region has gained over 12,300 jobs. Columbia's unemployment rate remains the lowest of all the metro regions in South Carolina.

In 2004 we made great strides in entering the information and technology economy. Engenuity continued to lead the region in implementing our Technology Strategic Plan. In August City Council approved WiFi on all new city projects, and staff will soon present a plan for WiFi cloud over the center of our City. The City and University signed the lease for the Laurel Street Technology Incubator in November. A groundbreaking was held for the USC Research Campus in December. Midlands Tech continued to be a strong technology partner. We have established a clear plan of action to create a Next Energy Strategic Plan.

Unitrends is a great example of our work. The city partnered with Trelys, the only venture capital fund in Columbia, to invest in start up technology companies. Unitrends is a pioneer in the development of data protection software. Last year they had thirty (30) employees. They just recently announced they have secured over eight (8) million new dollars in investment and will expand their payroll to seventy (70) high paying, high tech jobs in Columbia. Tonight we have with us the President of Unitrends Jacques McCormack. Please stand and be recognized.

I am also pleased to announce that Trelys has, just this week, made another investment in another Columbia company, Ometric. Ometric is a start up from the Nanotechnology Center at USC.

Last year, we outlined the need to make visitors a more integral part of our economy. In September we opened the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center. In 2004 we established a new branding campaign, "Columbia Riverbanks Region- Where Friendliness Flows".

In 2004 we completed the transformation of the old Confederate Printing Plant to a new Publix. Since the Publix opened last fall, there has been fifty ($50million) million dollars of new private residential development committed to the area. The Canal embankment opened in November. Yesterday, City Council heard proposals from two of the most successful developers in South Carolina for CanalSide. A decision will be made this month. The Kline Iron and Steel property will now be two magnificent office buildings. This spring we will break ground on the Columbia Hilton.

In 2004 Main Street made tremendous progress. The Meridian building has been completed. Two blocks of our streetscaping of Main Street have been finished, and the headquarters of First Citizens Bank is underway. We are and will continue to promote housing in downtown Columbia. A critical part of that strategy is to bring the City Center "alive" with culture, arts, and housing to create a vibrant City Center. We are near the completion of a project with the Center City Partnership for a Downtown Housing Study that is looking at every parcel in the City Center to determine if residential adaptive reuse is practical and economically sound, especially when compared to the costs of suburban sprawl.

State of the City

Edited by The_sandlapper

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Don't you think it can blend in with the Vista without it looking like an old mill? What do you think about bringing something that may remind you of the past, but bridges the past with the future (somthing nostalgic).

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well, it could bring in the mill architecture, and not actually look exactly like one.

What do you have in mind?

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Well, it could bring in the mill architecture, and not actually look exactly like one.

What do you have in mind?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

How about something to mirror the Middleton Building, across Gervais Street, that is being turned into condos. It is really a beautiful building.

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Articles like the one below are too few and far between. The media needs to review/report on whether the politicans follow through on their promises on a regular basis. BTW, the Bombers got the go ahead to build a new stadium in Greenville today.

A YEAR LATER

Mayor Bob Coble pushed for several initiatives last year in his first State of the City speech. Here is what he said then — and what happened:

What he said: The city should add police officers trained as specialists in domestic violence.

What happened: The department did not hire specialists, although all officers receive some domestic violence training.

What he said: “My hope is that one day we along with our children can go to a Gamecock or Bomber baseball game in a new facility.”

What happened: The Bombers chose to leave town when the city did not support a plan to build a joint Bombers-USC Gamecocks stadium. Under the deal, USC would have provided the land, the Bombers would have pitched in $2 million, and the taxpayers would have paid $10 million. The Bombers are awaiting approval from Minor League Baseball for a move to Greenville.

What he said: The city should make a long-term commitment to the East Central City Consortium.

What happened: The East Central City Consortium drafted a master plan for redeveloping five clusters of neighborhoods. But the city still has to work through regulatory barriers and find funding to begin implementing the plan. The first phase is estimated to cost $103 million.

What he said: The city should update its master plan to include the mental health property on Bull Street.

What happened: After run-ins with the state and concerns from developers that they were being left out of the process, the mayor and Gov. Mark Sanford tapped the nonprofit Central Carolina Community Foundation to guide the campus’s redevelopment. It is to pick a consultant next week.

What he said: The city was to explore the creation of a Technology Center where emerging companies could collaborate and benefit from low overhead and technology infrastructure.

What happened: Instead of creating a separate business center, the city merged it with the USC business incubator under the name of the USC/Columbia Technology Center.

— Jeff Wilkinson

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Below is an excerpt from the Columbia Star's report of a recent city council work session. The discussion is about the CCI site. If I am not mistaken, the city paid about $5 million for CCI in 1995. Since then, an unspecified amount has been spent on demolition and cleanup. Some utilities MAY have been put in place as well. Mungo is offerring $4.2 mm and the Beach Company 3.5 to 6.8 mm. The city should accept the Beach Company's 6.8 million offer and be glad it isn't losing more money.

CanalSide

Jim Gambrell, city economic development director, introduced council to the two development teams competing for the CanalSide site. Gambrell said four proposals were considered beginning January 3, and he preferred today’s two along with the city staff leaders Steve Gantt and Dana Turner.

First to speak was Steve Mungo of the Mungo Company. His team’s architect Doug Quackenbush handled the presentation while Mungo did the talking. He suggested a residential maximum of 770 units. Mungo worried about the commercial component because Columbia had 1.6 million square feet of empty office space. His team offered to buy the CanalSide site for $4.2 million by putting $1.2 million up front and $1 million annually till the balance was paid.

Cromartie asked about diversity and development completion timetable. Osborne asked about Mungo’s price and purchase proposal to buy the CanalSide site. Sinclair wondered if the city had the resources to accommodate Mungo’s wish list. Mungo responded with a businessman’s approach. “We can negotiate everything,” he said. Davis wanted to hear about the access for all the citizens of Columbia. Rickenmann asked what was necessary to start construction. (See site plan, top of page 6)

John Darby, executive vice president for the Beach Company, introduced his team and spoke to council about the team’s track record, about reacting to the market. He offered to buy the CanalSide site for at least $3.5 million and for at most $6.8 million, depending on how many “affordable” housing units were to be built. The affordable status could be achieved with heavy subsidies; hence, the lower purchase price of the site as the affordable housing count got higher. Overall, Beach was not asking for any financial incentives from the city, while Mungo was suggesting the taxes be retained to maintain the public domain on site. Just off–site, parallel to the property line and the canal’s edge, the planned esplanade had to be built by the city as soon a practical.

Devine asked about affordability. Darby answered that Beach had already developed over 2,000 affordable housing units. Osborne again asked about the beach purchase price of the CanalSide site. Cromartie again asked about the accommodation for diversity in the development. Sinclair complimented Darby for Beach’s Parkside Apartments in the Vista’s early days across Taylor from Finlay Park. The apartments were later sold as condominiums. Sinclair asked about the feasibility of a hotel, and Darby answered that Beach was not in the hotel business but could readily partner with a hotel developer. Davis wanted to hear about the mixed–income aspects. Rickenmann wanted to hear the number of proposed multi–family units. (See site plan, top of page 6.)

Both teams were congratulated and thanked by Coble.

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