Chelsea Schneider, Municipal Innovations Specialist
Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers sees his vision for downtown as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform the city’s center into a place where more residents can live, shop and visit for entertainment.
This spring, Myers joined community leaders in announcing conceptual plans for downtown, which include multi-use developments that pair commercial and parking space with housing units; a new downtown promenade with an amphitheater for small events; and a trail to connect the amenities.
“The south side is experiencing a resurgence, and we are leading the charge on that resurgence,” Myers said. “What we are seeing nationwide is migration not only into urban areas, but also surrounding cities that provide convenient proximity with desirable amenities. The demand is only increasing, and Greenwood is in a great position to meet that demand.”
Already, Greenwood revamped its Community Center, which now includes “The Gym”, a state-of-the-art workout facility with a modern look and feel; aerobics rooms; refurbished indoor basketball courts; and “Kid City” featuring a Luckey Climber and outdoor musical garden. The project represented a complete re-envisioning of the 25-year-old space.
“We must continue to invest in these amenities, which attract commercial investment and an educated, community-oriented workforce,” Myers said.
Myers anticipates work to begin on the downtown improvements within the next few years. In all, the work could add around 480 rooftops to the downtown area, with the growth featuring new apartments, condominiums and townhomes. The city also recently purchased a 19-acre middle school site located in the heart of downtown.
Myers said several developers already are interested in investing in Downtown Greenwood.
Another project will improve Madison Avenue, one of the city’s main north-south corridors. The project includes pedestrian-friendly widened sidewalks, an elevated and separated bicycle lane and other streetscape improvements. Construction is set to begin in 2018.