In Spartanburg, we like to do big things.
We try what most cities our size won’t. It’s why we’re the home of the North American operations for BMW and Michelin, and have one of the highest levels of international investment per-capita in the United States. At the same time, we’re a cultivator of homegrown businesses like Milliken & Co., JM Smith, Integral Solutions, Johnson Development, OTO Development, and RJ Rockers Brewing.
It’s why we became the first Bicycle Friendly Community in the state of South Carolina, why we’re the host for the revered (or is it feared?) Assault on Mount Mitchell, a downtown criterium that riders say is one of the best on the circuit, and why we started the first B-Cycle bicycle-sharing program in the Southeast.
Yes, we spend a lot of time outside here in South Carolina, but not just on our bikes. We also love spectator sports. The Carolina Panthers host their annual training camp here at Wofford College every summer, and have broken attendance records four straight years. The Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas, an annual all-star high school game pitting the best future college players in the Carolinas, is held here every December. Between our seven colleges and universities and nine high schools, tens of thousands of Spartanburg County residents attend some sort of sports event every week.
And we have a long and proud baseball history. Historic Duncan Park, now the home for the Spartanburg High School program, is in the midst of a multi-year, multimillion dollar refurbishment that will transform it into one of the best prep stadiums anywhere, while paying homage to its historic significance. Locals still talk wistfully about the days when the Phillies Class-A team called Spartanburg home, and longtime residents and newcomers alike have long dreamed of professional baseball coming back to town, with a modern downtown ballpark to call home.
Speaking of Downtown Spartanburg, we've been focused on its revitalization for more than a decade.
So while we still have plenty of room to grow, we're also way past the "just talking" stage. Here is just a sample of what's happened so far:
- Ground is broken on the AC Hotel By Marriott, the first AC Hotel in South Carolina. The $20-plus million, 10-story hotel is located adjacent to the Snyder property.
- A $25 million project that will extend the runway and bring a host of technological upgrades begins at Spartanburg Dowtown Memorial Airport, our general aviation airport that is a favorite of corporate air travelers.
- Hub City Co-Op, the first co-op grocery store in the state of South Carolina opens downtown in April.
- Plans for new mixed-use development to include 30-40 residential units in the Grain District announced.
- Plans for new 50,000 sf Class-A office building to be located adjacent to USC Upstate's George Dean Johnson Jr. School of Business & Economics and the Chapman Cultural Center announced.
- 13 new businesses open in Downtown Spartanburg, bringing three-year total to 58.
- Hub City Tap House, home of Ciclops Brewery & Cyderi, opens in September, bringing the second craft brewery to Downtown Spartanburg.
- Streetscape improvement projects completed on Wall Street and East Main Street.
- Northside Healthy Food Hub — the new $1.6 million home to the Hub City Farmer's Market, a large urban garden, cafe, and culinary training program — opens.
- $14.4 million in improvements, including major runway extension project, announced for the Downtown Memorial Airport. The investment promises to make the City's general aviation airport among the finest of its kind anywhere in the country.
- Spartanburg Community College opens its downtown campus in renovated historic Evans Building ($8.5 million)
- City Council approves eight downtown streetscaping/bicycle-pedestrian connectivity projects ($2.3 million)
- Main Street Challenge awards $12,000 to each of three winning businesses that open in formerly vacant downtown storefronts.
- More than 30 new businesses open downtown this year alone.
- West Main Streetscape Improvements ($325,000)
- Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine opens. ($30 million) Learn more and see the VCOM campus.
- City completes $4.4 million in upgrades and renovations to Downtown Memorial Airport.
- USC Upstate's George Dean Johnson Jr. School of Business opens. ($26 million)
- RJ Rockers Brewing Co. moves from its industrial park location off Business 85 to its newly renovated space on West Main Street, just a block west of Morgan Square. Read the story about the move and the local partnership that made it happen here.
- City Council adopts Downtown Code and Downtown Master Plan. In so doing, Spartanburg became the first municipality in South Carolina to adopt a form-based building code for its central business district. Remember, we like to be first.
- Chapman Cultural Center opens ($42 million)
- Morgan Square renovation ($2.5 million)
- 240-room Marriott Hotel & Conference Center opens ($40 million)
- Seven new corporate headquarters, including the One Morgan Square building pictured below, plus two other spec Class-A office buildings have been constructed in Downtown Spartanburg. All this new Class A space is occupied. Total investment of more than $80 million.
- More than 320 new or renovated residential units have been completed. Downtown residential occupancy rates remain above 95 percent.
- City investment of more than $25 million in three new downtown parking garages to support development.
Potential Grain District/Downtown site showing minor-league scale stadium overlay. (Stadium pictured is Fluor Field.)
Rendering of $20-plus million, 10-story AC Hotel by Marriott, now under construction adjacent to potential stadium site.
Potential site is half a block from award-winning RJ Rockers Brewing Company.