If Greenville’s downtown revitalization effort is to succeed, it cannot depend solely on grant funding, public investment or other incentives to develop new opportunities. It will require the infusion of private money to bring residential and commercial options as well, resources that will serve to facilitate the growth of a more engaging and enjoyable experience in that part of the city.
It is therefore exciting to see unveiled a proposed $40 million student housing complex featuring retail space, slated for construction in the heart of downtown. If the plans proceed and that dream is realized in the coming years, it could bring thousands of students within walking distance of East Carolina University and ultimately become a cornerstone of the city’s future.
When the Imperial Tobacco plant on Atlantic Avenue burned in a devastating 2008 fire, Greenville lost more than a link to a century of cultivating the golden leaf. The owners of the facility hoped to transform it into mixed-use residential and retail space, appealing to young professionals due to its location and innovation. Its destruction leveled those hopes as well.
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