Is Greenville growing taller? How density will play a role in GVL 2040 plan

Published: Jan. 6, 2023 at 10:37 PM EST
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GREENVILLE, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - As the city of Greenville continues to grow, we are looking ahead to a 2040 plan and a new development code.

At the city’s design review board meeting Thursday night, 3 of the 4 big projects on the agenda were 7 stories or higher. One of the top concerns for residents in attendance was the height of some projects. As Fox Carolina learned today, tall development is what some areas might be seeing more of.

“All these new proposed projects certainly aren’t the first and they won’t be the last ‘’ said Ian Thomas, the president of the West End Neighborhood association. He’s seen a lot of change...tall change.

“I think we have over eight proposed projects that could be higher than four stories, some might be 10 stories,” he said.

The West End has been a hot spot for mixed-use development.

“What a lot of residents are concerned about is, is that change congruent with the fabric of the neighborhood” said Thomas.

“There’s not going to be any more available land to develop on in Greenville,” said Pamela Adams, a member of the city planning commission. With no land left—the only place to build is up.

“Density is good. You know, because it brings people into the city. It provides housing, it provides jobs” she said.

It’s good... if it’s done correctly. If not, Adams says communities, especially those of color could be negatively impacted.

“Many of those houses that are historic are gone. Many of those residents are gone. So the few that are still there are still trying to hold on and preserve their community” she said.

Adams says the GLV2040 plan and new development code should help preserve communities and also redirect the current growth path.

“In 20 more years it [GVL 2040] shows there will be 0% African Americans living in the city. And if development continues as it does without us having careful dialogue and narration on the inclusive value that is written in there. Then we are watching this thing come to pass, to manifest and that doesn’t have to be” said Adams.

The city’s new development code will be released soon, maybe next week. After a series of public input sessions it’ll be approved by city council and go into effect.