Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Greenville News newspaper has a dedicated webpage on Downtown

Greenville, South Carolina is an interesting example of urban revitalization because it is a smaller city ("Steps to revitalization learned during Greenville trip," Danville News-Advance; "Learning from Greenville, SC," Metro Jacksonville--although I don't agree with how they term Greenville's investment in civic assets as "horizontal development; Greenville Case Study, Save Our Gateways, Brunswick Georgia).  It doesn't have the density or transit system common to a larger city.

Falls Park and Liberty Bridge, Greenville, SC.

One of the signature elements of its downtown is a waterfall, which for many years had been obscured ("Liberty Bridge, Falls Park transformed downtown," Greenville News; "A City's Signature Centerpiece," Public Roads).

I talked once with someone who had worked on multiple iterations of the city's plan and he commented how when they first proposed "daylighting" the falls it was rejected, but putting the idea out there set the stage for its eventual adoption and implementation.

I was looking at the Greenville News website.  The paper is part of the Gannett newspaper chain, and I have noticed recently that while the company was criticized in the 1990s for cheap journalism and for its voracious appetite for acquisition, these days many of the newspapers are doing great journalism on various topics from K-12 education (Sioux Falls Argus-Leader), misuse of tax liens (Indianapolis Star), water policy (Palm Springs Desert Sun), and neighborhood trauma and revitalization (Wilmington News Journal).

I lament how these days, most major newspapers are providing less and less community news coverage, so that in the future when people are researching local newspaper archives for such information, they will be left wanting.

That's why I was surprised to see that the Greenville News website has a tab dedicated to stories on the city's Downtown, which is quite interesting.

Despite the fact that Gannett newspapers aren't locally owned, they seem to have re-committed to high quality local reporting, which normally is a benefit of local ownership as opposed to being owned by distantly located corporations.

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