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krazeeboi last won the day on March 12 2013

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Gigalopolis (11/14)



  1. As a native South Carolinian who attended undergrad and lived in the Charlotte region for some years afterwards in the aughts, I have to chuckle quite a bit at the ahistoricity of this sentiment. But one thing I can say is that the political developments in NC during the Obama years (whew) along with SC's notable growth and development spurt around the same time served as a nice slice of humble pie that NCers, to their credit, went ahead and ate. But prior to that, nobody alive who was truly being honest would say SC was the Carolina "mountain of conceit."
  2. "Build the wall! Build the wall!"
  3. The owners of Hotel Trundle want to open another boutique hotel in the heart of Columbia’s Vista entertainment district. The hoteliers plan to remodel the former Epes-Fitzgerald Paper Company on Gadsden Street into a 41-unit boutique property, according to an application filed with the city of Columbia. Plans include construction of a new lobby on the south side of the building and adding a rooftop patio to the two-story building.
  4. The Richland County Council voted Tuesday to unanimously approve financial incentives for a $100 million housing development at the former SCANA bus storage site on Huger Street. Huger Flats, previously identified by the county as Project Wichita, will take up nearly 6 acres at 1409 Huger St. across from The Nine student apartment complex, at the gateway to downtown Columbia’s Vista. The apartment development plans to include sidewalks, a pocket park and a 643-space parking garage, according to county documents. Read more at: https://www.thestate.com/news/local/article277456063.html#storylink=cpy
  5. Hotelier and developer Ben Arnold will again pitch a $135 million four-star hotel and apartment project slated for Columbia’s Vista entertainment district, marking a scaled down version of his earlier $511 million plan to build three high-end hotels and a 675-space parking garage on the 12-acre site in the center of the entertainment district after state and local politicians pushed back on plans to expand the convention center and Richland County leaders balked at the cost of the parking garage. This time around Arnold is asking the Richland County Council for a 15-year, 50 percent property tax abatement to offset the cost of the $25 million garage and sidewalk improvements. The four-star, full-service Hyatt House and Hyatt Centric hotel would be a first for Columbia, as well as the city's largest hotel property which would also boast 10,000 square feet of rooftop restaurant, bar and meeting space with a retractable roof, as well as another restaurant on the ground floor. According to Arnold, the apartments--called The Residence at Vista Depot--would be high-end, much like The Palms 135-unit apartment development he built at Main and Lady, and include a pool, yoga studio, fitness center, dog spa and rooftop space. Arnold had hoped to break ground in early 2024. Construction is estimated to take between 2 and 2½ years.
  6. A lakefront resort community could be coming to Lexington after the Town Council took initial steps to acquire and develop what the mayor called “the most prestigious property on Lake Murray.” The proposed 93.5-acre development, located off Beekeeper Court and North Lake Drive, would include two hotels, a marina, retail space, restaurants, a conference center, single-family homes, townhomes and condos, according to the announcement. The planned project would be completed through a partnership between the town and private developers. Lexington would build the regional conference center on the property, build the road to the conference center and put in water and sewer lines, MacDougall said. Private developers would build everything else. Lexington officials expect it would take 15 years to complete the development and hopes to break ground on the project in two years.
  7. A property flying the Four Seasons flag will replace the former Days Inn budget motel at 155 Meeting St., the Florida-based developer of the project announced while also submitting more detailed design plans to the city. “Strategic Property Partners LLC has agreed on terms with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, the world’s leading luxury hospitality company, to manage the planned hotel and residences at 155 Meeting Street in downtown Charleston,” said Brad Cooke, the real estate firm’s senior vice president of development. It will be the first Four Seasons-flagged property in the Palmetto State.
  8. SEM Wafertech Inc. (SEM Wafertech) and Solar4America Technology, Inc. (Solar4America), both 100% owned by SPI Energy Co., Ltd. (NASDAQ: SPI), a global renewable energy company, today announced plans to establish their first South Carolina operations in Sumter County. The $65.9 million investment will create 300 new jobs. Operations are expected to begin later this year.
  9. The developers of a $48 million apartment complex across from the BullStreet District are planning live music and dining as part of their major redevelopment project. Astral Development in February purchased six adjacent properties near the intersections of Elmwood Avenue and Bull Street northeast of the downtown center of Columbia. The New York group plans to seek a restaurant user for its proposed space with a live music or comedy stage in an effort to create a gathering space for the residents of the 193 apartments it’s building on the 1.6-acre site, as well as attract others from surrounding neighborhoods.
  10. That's a welcome commonsense change to the criteria. We'll see what else this does for the Charlotte-area agglomeration of UAs going forward.
  11. Oh I'm aware of that; NASCAR, Lowe's, and proximity to Lake Norman have been really good to Mooresville in the postwar era. But Statesville used to lead the state in tobacco production in an earlier era which is primarily why I made the statement that I did.
  12. Note that I said those water and land features prevent the Gastonia and Rock Hill UAs from being completely contiguous with Charlotte's, not from being completely folded into Charlotte's. The longstanding rule for UAs has been that once designated as such, it remains as such regardless of how much it grows into a neighboring larger UA. The only exception is when it falls beneath the population/density UA thresholds, in which case an immediately neighboring UA with which it is sufficiently contiguous can absorb it. That may have been among the recent changes to the criteria also but I'm not sure. As the county seat of a historically fairly industrious county, I'm somewhat surprised Statesville wasn't already an independent UA. I'm guessing it was probably an urban cluster at some point in the past before Charlotte's northern exurban tentacles got ahold of it. The same was probably true of Monroe also.
  13. This appears to be a season of unprecedented economic growth in SC; practically every part of the state is getting major investment these days. Scout Motors Inc. (“Scout”) is establishing its first manufacturing plant in Blythewood, which is near Columbia, South Carolina. At the Richland County site, the company will build all-electric, next-generation trucks and rugged SUVs harkening back to the iconic Scout vehicles produced from 1960 to 1980. The company’s $2 billion investment has the potential to create 4,000 or more permanent jobs. At full capacity, more than 200,000 Scout vehicles may be produced annually at the facility. Tin Thanh Group Americas, a Vietnam-based tire manufacturer, announced plans on March 14 to establish its first United States operations which will be in Allendale County with an anticipated opening in September 2024. The company’s $68 million investment will create 1,031 new jobs. Pallidus, an innovative silicon carbide (SiC) wafer semiconductor manufacturer, announced plans to relocate its corporate headquarters and manufacturing operations from New York to York County. The company’s $443 million investment will create 405 new jobs in Rock Hill. Operations are expected to commenced the third quarter of 2023. Cirba Solutions, a comprehensive battery management and materials company, recently announced plans to build its newest state-of-the-art, flagship operations in Richland County. This integrated lithium-ion battery materials campus will be an initial investment of over $300 million and will create more than 300 new jobs with an expected opening in late 2024. Charlotte-based Albemarle Corporation (Albemarle), a global leader in transforming essential resources such as lithium and bromine into critical ingredients for mobility, energy, connectivity and health, announced plans to establish South Carolina operations in Chester County. The company will invest at least $1.3 billion and create more than 300 new jobs to construct a new “Mega-Flex” lithium hydroxide processing facility. This facility will support the surging demand for electric vehicles and other energy storage applications that use lithium-ion batteries. Construction is expected to begin in 2024. Hounen Solar (Hounen), a California-based global solar panel manufacturer, recently announced plans to establish its first United States manufacturing operations in Orangeburg County. The company’s $33 million investment will create 200 new jobs. IKO, a leading, global manufacturer of roofing products, announced plans last month to establish its first South Carolina operations in Chester County. The company’s $363 million investment will create 180 new jobs with operations expected to come online in late 2025. Between March 14 and March 21, Gov. Henry McMaster’s office announced incoming distribution centers for Cooperative Electric Energy Utility Supply (CEEUS), Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits and Mattress Warehouse, all in Lexington County. Lexington-based CEEUS is investing $52 million in expansion with a 247,000-square foot facility at 1029 Colite Ave., creating up to 61 new jobs, while the Columbia-based Southern Glazer’s is investing $80 million in a new facility at West Columbia’s Saxe Gotha Industrial Park. The distribution center for Maryland-based Mattress Warehouse, planned for 803 Industrial Park near Columbia Metropolitan Airport, will be the company’s first in South Carolina and create up to 108 new jobs over the next year.
  14. Interesting; I wasn't aware that Charlotte's UA was reconstructed under the new criteria. I always thought Statesville should be separate, seeing as how it dangles as an appendage from the Huntersville/Cornelius/Mooresville cluster (which looks like it could be its own UA too). But all in all, it's the Catawba River and Lake Wylie (and nearby industrial land usage for the airport and Duke Energy) that prevent Gastonia and Fort Mill/Rock Hill from being completely contiguous with Charlotte's UA. In any case, this is why I believe urban agglomerations is a better way of assessing the full urbanized area of a place, which is basically a main urbanized area plus its surrounding UAs that are reasonably contiguous to it. For Charlotte that would include at minimum Concord, Gastonia, and Fort Mill/Rock Hill.
  15. I'd say the the reasons the rapid growth of the Carolinas typically gets lost in the national news shuffle is largely due to 1) having been significantly overshadowed in both population size and growth rates by FL and TX well over the past half century within the South/Sunbelt and 2) its largest and fastest-growing cities and popular beach destinations (Hilton Head somewhat excluded) not being located directly along I-95. If they were, they'd enjoy greater exposure to more Americans traveling up and down the nation's busiest interstate which would, in turn, influence general perceptions of the region for outsiders concerning growth. Also the politicization of state population growth rates of the largest states dominates much of the conversation these days with growing red/reddish TX, FL, and AZ vs. shrinking blue CA, NY, and IL having become representative of our ongoing partisan polarization as a nation to the extent that even their elected leaders (of the growing Sunbelt states anyway) have been engaging. The Carolinas don't really have a dog in that fight, especially without any blue states to the north that could easily be cast as opposite counterparts for political purposes. I don't think the size of the largest metros of both states specifically have anything to do with it. Most people still continue to regard Raleigh-Durham as one larger region or metro, and metro Atlanta is nearly three times larger than metro Charlotte physically because that is a reflection of the actual sizes of both places more or less, not because the boundaries of metro areas are arbitrarily determined. Charlotte's metro area absolutely should not include Greenville, Spartanburg, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, or Hickory because they are their own distinct, independent labor markets whereas Roswell and Alpharetta are thoroughly and unquestionably suburban Atlanta, located within the same county as Atlanta, and fully included within greater Atlanta's urbanized area (Athens, of course, has its own distinct identity and history but is in the Atlanta CSA, not MSA).
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