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Old 01-17-2017, 08:45 AM
 
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And you can blame the costs of the TC projects directly on Council who has put off its redevelopment...as costs continue to go up.

If the bathrooms are 500K now, you can bet they were probably 350K 5 years ago. In 5 more years they will be 650K.

Whole lot of talk without ever willing to really commit to do anything. A big waste of time....the public's.
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Old 01-18-2017, 06:42 AM
 
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was just glancing at the news and noticed there was an article about the Gville Blvd Walmart now being closed from 12AM-6AM starting 1/28. I found this interesting. Wonder if there isn't enough traffic during those hours or if crime played a factor? Still hoping the whole thing shuts down...ha
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Old 01-18-2017, 07:55 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brandy8006 View Post
was just glancing at the news and noticed there was an article about the Gville Blvd Walmart now being closed from 12AM-6AM starting 1/28. I found this interesting. Wonder if there isn't enough traffic during those hours or if crime played a factor? Still hoping the whole thing shuts down...ha
Yea, I saw that this morning too, brandy! I'm sure it's a combination of both.


Also, Uptown Brewing Company announced they will officially be opening Saturday, Jan. 28th.

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Consultant recommends aquatics center

Consultant: Swimming tops list on facility needs - Daily Reflector

Quote:
An aquatics center in the city could bring more than $12 million annually to the local economy, a consultant told the Greenville City Council during its meeting last week.

Bill Kruger, a consultant with Texas-based Conventions, Sports & Leisure International (CSL), presented the council with the results of a feasibility study into building a sports complex in Greenville to drive sports tourism in the area. The study was commissioned and paid for by the Greenville-Pitt County Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Back in July we started reviewing numbers from the past year,” Executive Director Andrew Schmidt said. “We were counting the number of events that we couldn’t bring to Greenville. ... That number was 75.
“That’s a lot of economic impact that we are letting out of our county,” he said.


Schmidt said the reason the events could not locate in Pitt County was either the lack of an adequate facility or the lack of availability of existing facilities.

“We thought this was worth exploring,” Schmidt said. “CSL has worked a lot in North Carolina and also has worked with East Carolina University as well, so they are familiar with Pitt County as well.”
Kruger said CSL specializes in consulting services for the convention, sport, entertainment and visitor industries.

“A lot of what we do involves looking at event facility projects that serve local needs as well as boosting local economies through sports tourism,” he said.

Kruger said the study analyzed the feasibility of a new sports complex focused on youth and amateur sports. He said a new complex could offer one or more of the following components:

• An aquatics center that has 50-meter lanes as well as a diving area;

• An indoor hard-court sports facility;

• An outdoor sports facility that would feature “triangle fields” for playing baseball or softball;

• An outdoor sports facility that would feature “rectangle fields” for playing soccer or lacrosse.

“There is a strong interest and a strong passion for youth athletics in this area,” Kruger said.

Kruger said more than 40 different athletics associations in the area were interviewed to determine the interest and need of a new sports complex in Pitt County. CSL also conducted web-based and telephone surveys with residents.

The company also studied the market demand in the region for sports facilities, what competition each would have in the region for attracting events to Pitt County, and the direct or indirect economic benefits to Pitt County for each of the facilities.

“There is a void in this part of North Carolina for some of these facilities,” Kruger said. “There is definitely potential here in Pitt County.”

Kruger said that the study showed that an aquatics facility ranked the highest in market demand, public interest and economic benefits.

“Swimming, as a sport, is certainly on the rise,” he said. “An aquatics facility had the highest interest levels from people in the community.”

Kruger said that an aquatics center would produce an estimated $7.4 million in direct spending — money spent for hotels, restaurants, entertainment and shopping — each year in the local economy. The facility also would result in about $4.6 million in indirect spending locally each year, Kruger said.

Cost estimates for the facility would be about $25 million and would cost more than $1.4 million a year to operate, he said. However, Kruger said this type of a facility could produce a partnership opportunity with ECU.

“These types of facilities often work the best in an area with a university,” he said. “I would recommend exploring that option with ECU ... that has the potential to change the dynamics of that project.”

Kruger said an indoor sports facility, which also ranked high in public interest, would have an estimated economic benefit of about $10.4 million a year, $6 million for direct spending and $4.4 million in indirect spending. The facility’s construction costs are estimated at about $27 million and would cost more than $2 million a year to operate, he said.

Kruger said an outdoor sports facility for baseball and softball would have an estimated economic benefit of about $5 million a year, $3.1 million for direct spending and $1.9 million in indirect spending. The facility’s construction costs are estimated at about $13.5 million and would cost about $1 million a year to operate, he said.

“There is a little more competition in this region for this type of facility,” Kruger said. “But this area also has a strong tradition in baseball.”

Several City Council members spoke in favor of taking a closer look into possibly investing in a new sports complex.
“We are very interested in exploring these opportunities,” Mayor Allen Thomas said during the meeting.

“We are such a sports-oriented community. ... We are just looking for the right path to get the best return on our investment.”
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Old 01-18-2017, 08:26 AM
 
112 posts, read 102,935 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brandy8006 View Post
was just glancing at the news and noticed there was an article about the Gville Blvd Walmart now being closed from 12AM-6AM starting 1/28. I found this interesting. Wonder if there isn't enough traffic during those hours or if crime played a factor? Still hoping the whole thing shuts down...ha
Don't hope for that!! The one on 10th Street is still half way decent! I do remember hearing a while back that the convention center wanted that property, so this may be the beginning of that...
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Old 01-18-2017, 12:07 PM
 
1,019 posts, read 1,002,816 times
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A competition aquatics center would probably do well, hosting meets and tournaments. I'm not sure if just building a general purpose aquatics facility is worth it, especially with places the like current aquatics center and aquaventure in Winterville. I wonder if there would be a way to kill 2 birds with 1 stone by building and configuring a small civic arena that doubles as an aquatics center. Maybe the pools can be configured so that they can be covered over and used for basketball, arena football, or even hockey. If not, an adjoining facility to the arena would also work.

I'd also love to see the list of these 75 events Greenville missed out on. I'm sure that would have been an even better indicator of the type of holes the city needs to fill in.
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Old 01-18-2017, 05:43 PM
 
1,672 posts, read 2,039,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beasty Drummer View Post
Don't hope for that!! The one on 10th Street is still half way decent! I do remember hearing a while back that the convention center wanted that property, so this may be the beginning of that...
That's one Greenville rumor I'd really like see put to rest..

Walmart, as a whole, is reorganizing their retail structure. I'll assume that most of their late-night business is from the grocery side. Their neighborhood markets are 24 hours, plus they're improving their online GM sales; therefore they don't really need all of their supercenters to remain at 24 hours. That location's customer base has 3 markets they can shop overnight. The other supercenter only has one market within a reasonable distance, but it also serves Simpson, Grimesland, and (theoretically), ECU students. Unless Walmart (God forbid) puts a neighborhood market in east Greenville, the 33 location likely remains 24 hours.
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Old 01-18-2017, 06:52 PM
 
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Big news! Greenville appears to be trying to lure a coastal plain league baseball team.

Greenville trying to secure baseball team to join Coastal Plain League

This would be great, IMO. Since Fayetteville is moving up to the minors, Greenville can probably take their spot in 2018.
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Old 01-19-2017, 06:29 AM
 
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Grant program great for the city.

Grant program reaps big benefits for city - Daily Reflector

Quote:
Greenville is getting a big return on its investment in small businesses in the city.
Since 2013, Greenville’s Office of Economic Development has helped businesses obtain more than $500,000 through North Carolina’s Rural Economic Development Division Building Reuse Grant program. The program provides grants to local governments to assist businesses with renovating vacant buildings or expanding an existing business.

“The city obtains the grant on behalf of the businesses,” Greenville’s Economic Development Liaison Christian Lockamy said. “The amount of the grant is based on the number of full-time positions, and the businesses must invest at least double the amount of the grant in renovations.”

The grant requires a 5 percent match from the city, which is included in the city’s annual budget to promote economic development in Greenville. The City Council also must pass a resolution supporting the grant applications for each business, Lockamy said

“This shows the state that the city is showing support for the businesses,” Lockamy said. “It also shows that the city is willing to meet the required 5 percent grant.”

To date, the city has helped businesses obtain about $550,000 in grants through the program. The city’s investment through matchings funds is about $25,000, Lockamy said.

“Once the city committed to promoting economic development, this grant was something we started going after,” Lockamy said. “It has been paying off.”

Businesses receiving grants have created more than 90 full-time jobs through the program, Lockamy said. Most of the positions pay an annual salary of more than $30,000 a year, and many are providing medical benefits as well, he said.

“That’s just the full-time positions that we keep track of through the program,” Lockamy said. “There also have been a large number of part-time jobs as well. The people that get these jobs are spending that money here in Greenville, which creates a ripple effect through the local economy.”

The buildings that are being renovated also increase substantially in value, creating additional revenue for the city in property taxes, Lockamy said. Additional city revenues also will be created through sales taxes at those businesses, he said.

“The city gets its investment back in almost no time,” Lockamy said. “You take a building that has been sitting unused for years and turn it into a business that is providing jobs and services in the community ... that’s what this program was designed to do.”

Lockamy said that these businesses also encourage additional investments in surrounding properties.
“Again it’s the ripple effect,” Lockamy said. “We are seeing this along the Dickinson Avenue corridor right now. After businesses started opening there, more businesses wanted to locate in that area.”

The Uptown Brewery Co., 418 Evans St., was approved for a $60,000 Building Reuse Grant last year. More than $460,000 is being invested in the building on Evans Street that was vacant for almost 30 years.
“We took a building that has sat here for years and turned it into something nice,” co-owner Donald Dunn said. “The people in Greenville’s Office of Economic Development were great during the grant process. ... They are really committed to seeing this area thrive.”

Last week, the City Council approved resolutions supporting grant applications for two new businesses — the Pitt Street Brewing Co. at 630 S. Pitt St. and the Luna Pizza Café at 632 S. Pitt St. — located in the old Coca-Cola Building that is undergoing renovation.

The Pitt Street Brewing Co., which is applying for a $112,500 grant, will be a full-production brewery with a canning line for regional distribution. The company will create at least nine full-time jobs with health insurance and an annual salary averaging $32,000 a year. The property owner is investing more than $500,000 in improvements. The city’s matching funds — if approved by City Council — would be $5,625.
Luna Pizza Café, which is applying for a grant of between $20,000 to $50,000, will be a 49-seat upscale authentic craft pizza café. The business will create between four to seven jobs with an average salary of $32,000 a year. The city’s matching funds — if approved by the City Council — would be between $1,000 and $2,500.

Lockamy said the City Council is expected to vote to accept the grants on behalf of the businesses next month. Several additional businesses will be applying for grants later this year, he said.
“This program is a win-win for everyone involved,” Lockamy said. “This is a minimum public investment that produces substantial returns through job creation, quality of life for residents through the services these businesses offer, and helps revitalize areas of the city.”
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Old 01-19-2017, 01:09 PM
 
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More about the CPL baseball pitch:

Baseball league makes pitch to council - Daily Reflector

Quote:
Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The possibility of a summer league baseball team in Greenville will be one of the topics discussed during the City Council’s annual planning retreat on Jan. 27.

Justin Sellers with the Coastal Plain League discussed the possibility of adding a Greenville team to the league during Thursday’s City Council meeting.

The wood-bat collegiate summer league features college players recruited throughout the United States. It was formed with six teams in 1997 and currently includes 15 teams in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Georgia.

“We will be adding an additional five teams by 2018,” Sellers said. “The league is continuing to grow at a phenomenal rate.”
Sellers said almost 1,400 Coastal Plain League players have been been drafted by Major League Baseball franchises.

Sellers said more than 90 have gone on to play in the Major Leagues, including 2011 American League MVP and Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander, 2009 All-Star and Gold Glove winner Ryan Zimmerman and three-time All-Star Kevin Youkilis.

“Those are just some of the players that have come out of this league,” he said. “And ECU Baseball Coach Cliff Godwin played and coached in this league as well. He is very much in support of the league coming to Greenville.”

Sellers said teams in the league have occupied former minor league stadiums in their areas or have constructed their own stadiums that range between $3 million to $13 million.

“In 2016, the top five Coastal Plains franchises finished with a higher average attendance than 30 minor league teams,” Sellers said. “The league offers quality and affordable entertainment. Ticket prices average about $7 and some of our teams offer a package for $15, which includes ticket price and all-you-can-eat food and drink.”

Sellers said a franchise would give residents a hometown team to rally behind, elevate Greenville’s identity for marketing and deliver assets including affordable family entertainment, a regional fan base that would draw visitors and secondary events.

“We are definitely catching on,” he said. “In fact, we have had five minor league owners start teams and have gotten out of minor league baseball ... that’s a good sign.”

Several council members during the meeting spoke in favor of exploring the possibility.

“Baseball has a long tradition in Greenville,” At-large Councilman Calvin Mercer said. “There has been talk for years about whether Greenville was ready for a minor league team. I don’t think a minor league team is feasible right now ... but I got a strong sense that people here were interested in some kind of summer baseball.

“I don’t know if it is feasible, but I think it is definitely worth exploring,” Mercer said.

District 5 Councilman P.J. Connelly, who played Summer League and Minor League baseball, agreed.

“I think this is a wonderful opportunity for the city,” Connelly said. “I’m pleased that you are considering Greenville as a possible addition to your league. I think this a neat idea and could even benefit ECU in recruitment.”

Some residents who spoke in favor of a team expressed concerns about where it would play, particularly Guy Smith Stadium, where many baseball and softball tournaments are held during the spring and summer.

“We are not against baseball ... we love baseball here,” former Recreation and Parks director Boyd Lee said during the meeting. “We are just asking that the City Council take Guy Smith Stadium off a list where this team would play. This facility is very valuable to youth baseball in this area.”

“I am very much in favor of the Coastal Plains League,” J.H. Rose High School baseball coach Ronald Vincent said Thursday.

“But we cannot give up Guy Smith Stadium ... it is used almost every night during some months of the summer and we cannot take that away from our young people. To take Guy Smith Stadium away from them would be an injustice.”

The council unanimously approved a motion Thursday to direct city staff to explore the possibility of bringing a summer league baseball team to Greenville and to work with representatives with local baseball programs to make sure a team would not be detrimental to Greenville’s youth baseball programs.

Staff will present recommendations to council members, who will discuss the issue during their annual planning session on Jan. 27-28.
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Old 01-20-2017, 08:55 AM
 
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Originally Posted by michealbond View Post

Very nice building, but would have looked even better downtown.
No kidding! I feel like that is one thing that is completely absent from downtown is businesses. I would love to see an area like North Hills in Raleigh where you have big business buildings, hotels and restaurants all in a common area.
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