Greenville City Council on Feb. 28 reaffirmed its commitment to affordable housing and protecting neighborhoods heading into fiscal year 2023.
City leaders discussed the priorities at their annual retreat on Feb. 10. Infrastructure and affordable housing led the agenda, with the goal to protect established neighborhoods and build more sidewalks while making areas more pedestrian-friendly through traffic management.
The priorities also push for economic development through selective annexation and recruitment strategies, while fostering an entrepreneurial environment. The city will continue to help businesses that are still struggling in the aftermath of COVID-19. They’re also seeking to preserve and manage green space as part of their commitment to environmental stewardship.
The city will work on emergency services improvement through encouraging citizen participation and listening to residents. Mobility will be another focus, as the city looks to maintain or improve roadway design, public transportation, bike trials and traffic flow.
Work session: Facade improvements
Council made headway in its goal to improve building facades throughout the city. The city offered $10,000 to aid in improvements, with commercial buildings on Wade Hampton Boulevard getting a $25,000 grant for qualified improvements.
Members heard a presentation from Merle Johnson, director of Economic and Community Development, on the progress of the program during a council work session. The city has allocated $150,000 toward the facade improvement program this year, with 125 projects completed to date.
“This is our way of saying, ‘We care what you look like,'” councilwoman Dorothy Dowe said.
Approved on final reading: More parking space for Unity Park
Council approved an ordinance on second and final reading for the city to buy property on Welborn Street in the Unity Park area for $461,000 from Welborn Parcel Investments LLC. The land will add 24 parking spaces for the park. It will be part of a larger lot for both Unity Park and the Prisma Health Swamp Rabbit Trail.
Approved on final reading: Sewer rehab bond
Council approved an ordinance for $8 million in sewer improvements. The city received 12 bids, with JPMorgan Chase winning the bid. The city will pay $598,000 annually at 1.95% over 15 years. The bond will only go for rehab projects, not expansion.