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Friday, September 13, 2013

Stone Ave Development & Swamp Rabbit Trail Homes


Corner of Stone Avenue & North Main

Stone Avenue Development

The big open lot at the corner of N. Main and Stone Avenue is under consideration for development by The Beach Company, who are out of Charleston.  They have proposed a multi-use plan that includes 226 apartments adjacent to commercial / retail space and a three-story parking deck.  The plan also includes a community pool and park that will diversify the area where the downtown Historic District begins to edge up against the commercial space of the city. 

The project is still in design phase, and there is a lot of discussion with the North Main Community Association, who would like to see softer transitions between the apartments and single family residential on Rowley St.  The community would also like to see a high-end market that would anchor the retail space.  The association represents residents in a trendy area of older homes, very popular for the proximity to the downtown attractions.

Stone Ave is located just off the north side of downtown Greenville and certainly needs an new look to make it more attractive.  Its redevelopment has been hot topic over the last few years as the City proposed a Stone Avenue Plan which called for a narrowing of the road to two lanes and more parking.  However, Stone has plenty of traffic since it shunts drivers around the city center; this has caused concern from local business owners.  The Plan is still a work in progress, so time shall determine how the new look will progress.

Swamp Rabbit Trail Subdivision

With the decline of the recession, new home building is rolling strong again in the Greenville area. There are plenty of new homes to choose from, however, one unique subdivision is the first to provide direct access to the Swamp Rabbit Trail, which has been huge draw for pedestrians and bicyclists.  Running from downtown Greenville out to Travelers Rest, there have been limited land opportunities for development, but Addison Homes has managed to offer home sites directly on the trail, just south of Furman University off Watkins Bridge Road.  Their homes will feature “energy smart” homes which will be solar capable and able to produce more energy that they consume. 

The Swamp Rabbit Trail has seen a tremendous increase in usage, but many people must drive to access it. Studies have shown that traffic on such metro trails depends on how close residents are to the trail.  In response, Greenville County has added spur trails, links and sidewalks for resident to gain easier access without the drive.  An interesting proposed side trail will link to a new park and amphitheater at the old Travelers Rest High School. 

Wet Summer Weather

It’s been one of the wettest summers in history, with 53 inches of rain at GSP airport year to date.  That’s enough for the Upstate to be declared a primary natural disaster by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  The excess rain has certainly wreaked havoc on crops this year as well slowed new home construction. But, Labor Day is behind us, the rainfall has eased off, the days getting shorter, shorter, and pleasant fall weather is setting in. We are all grateful for a respite from the daily cloudbursts. Highs this week in the 80s with lows in the 60s.