2021 City of Greenville, SC Rewind
The construction of Unity Park, the ‘Wings of the City’ statues, a new $ 27 million public safety complex in an old Fluorine building and illegal Airbnbs were some of the key stories for 2021 outside the city of Greenville. , including the continuing controversy surrounding the masks.
Unity Park takes shape
Designated by the city as a park created for over a century, Unity Park – in the area along the Reedy River once known as Hudson Athletic Fields – has started to take shape this year. The 60-acre park straddles the Prisma Health Swamp Rabbit Trail and is intended to be both a nod to the history of the surrounding neighborhoods and a forward-looking cultural link and affordable housing hub. The cost estimates are in the order of $ 70 million.
As such, 2021 saw a lot of activity in and around the region as large-scale work began on the overall concept of the park, followed by the installation of the park’s three walkways over the Reedy River.
The last update? A giant rabbit sculpture for the park near The Commons along the Prisma Health Swamp Rabbit Trail.
City council has given the go-ahead for a $ 27 million public safety complex
Members of Greenville City Council have approved the purchase of a $ 27 million public safety complex in a former Fluorine building on the corner of Halton Road and Mall Connector Road. The move came as firefighters, police and city courts were crammed into decaying buildings with substandard infrastructure and a lack of parking.
The 126,000 square foot building will bring police, firefighters and city courts together under one roof in a much larger complex with more parking. The price of the building is $ 18.9 million and an additional $ 8.1 million is needed for the renovations.
The statues of the “Wings of the city” arouse controversy
Controversy over the “Wings of the City” sculptures by Mexican artist Jorge Martin gripped the city in April, with some arguing that the partially nude figures were “indecent”. Members of Greenville County Council have received a number of complaints about the statues. Departmental Council Finance Commission May 10 voted 4-1 to transfer $ 7,500 of county funds to nonprofit Hispanic Alliance which was promoting the display.
The statues were praised by some, hated by others and vandalized by a few, but the traveling statues were eventually moved to Raleigh, North Carolina. The city gave the statues a farewell in September. The exhibit helped the Hispanic Alliance by raising $ 70,000 in donations during “Wings” time in Greenville, according to information shared at the ceremony.
Masks remain a reality
As COVID-19 cases appeared to ebb around mid-2021, the delta variant became a major concern, prompting city leaders in August to re-issue mask warrants for boardrooms and common areas belonging to the city. The terms of reference were based on the recommendations of the Center for Disease Control and applied to everyone, vaccinated or not.
This was after Greenville City Council extended its mask ordinance in April. At the time, there were over 70,300 cases in Greenville County. The policy remains in place.
Granicus hired to crack down on Airbnb illegals
The city took seriously the crackdown on illegal Airbnbs and VRBOs that bypassed zoning laws. The City of Greenville has hired the exterior company Granicus to enforce the policies on short-term rentals. Granicus specializes in digital public service solutions for governments, including services related to municipal zoning bylaws.
Unauthorized short-term rental operators can be subject to a zoning violation, usually resulting in a fine. With a few exceptions, rentals are prohibited in most residential areas of the city.