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Old 10-14-2011, 06:33 AM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
4,705 posts, read 4,865,075 times
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My 2 cents...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ckeely View Post
My husband and I are traveling the US by RV looking for a place we’d like to live, and we’re currently in Greenville. He’s from New Hampshire (too cold) and I’m from Texas (too hot) – we’re looking for someplace with a moderate climate and lots of outdoor activities. I’ve been reading forums about Greenville, and I have some specific questions I’d appreciate answered. I don’t mean to criticize Greenville or the SC way of life, so please don’t take my questions as antagonistic, only as an honest request for information, bearing in mind that the answers to these questions are largely subjective.

1. I’ve been concerned about mentions on forums of Greenville being “high crime”. What does this really mean? I talked to a couple nurses here who said Greenville has some gang problems, but that most violent crimes are domestic.

I agree that most of the violent crime here is probably domestic, although I had one co-worker who had a vagrant try rob her at a fast food restaurant. He got a little physical, but another local came running to help. There is plenty of petty theft here. Another coworker had her purse stolen while pumping gas. She never saw the guy. I used to work at a place that got robbed several times, probably by the same people. After four years here, we feel more comfortable than we used to as far as crime goes.

2. Every place has “bad areas,” usually low-income and higher-crime, the ones you wouldn’t walk through alone at night. How much of this does Greenville have, and does it fall along a racial/ethnic divide? Where are these areas, and how hard are they to avoid?

The west side is the bad area, and yes the area is nearly all black. It is easy to avoid this area, if you want. The upside for the adventurous types is that you can buy a house for less than $10k.

3. What about Spartanburg and surrounding cities?

Forget about Spartanburg.

4. Greenville seems a bit more progressive to me than some places we’ve visited, but SC is still the Bible belt. How religious is the atmosphere of Greenville? Are parents fighting to have prayer in schools? Does religion crop up in civic and community events?

I find a very religious atmosphere here among the people. When you first move here, people's most common question is, "Have you found a church yet?" People pray in restaurants before dinner. Church dominates most folks' social scene. However, religion has not cropped up in any civic or community events affiliated with the City of Greenville that I have attended.

5. How liberal or conservative is the area – socially, politically, etc.? Is the “man is the head of the household / woman raises babies” attitude dominant among women?

Very conservative here. There are many stay-at-home mom's. I think that's a good thing, but the women I know that stay at home aren't bowing down to their husbands. But traditional roles are more dominant here. (Men who can't cook, or shop for groceries. Women who don't pick up any heavy things, or open their own door if a man is around...) Us liberals are here, but many of us feel like we have to whisper groans to each other (when we find each other). This area is extremely conservative politically. We have a "tea party" rep in Congress (trey Gowdy), Jim Demint, etc. If you want to catch the political flavor of the area, you can go to the website of the local morning radio talk show and "listen live" to the callers:

Russ And Lisa - News Radio WORD

It blows me away sometimes.


6. Greenville also looks more racially and ethnically diverse to me than other places we’ve been (Tennessee, for example) – is this the case? Is there racial tension and hostility?

It doesn't feel diverse to me. It's black and white, with a few hispanics. I guess if you just go to downtown Greenville, things may seem more diverse.

7. How bad is the summer heat/humidity? I know it’s less than Florida, but do you walk outside and immediately start dripping? I’m from Texas, and summer heat gets bad enough that you try not to go outside – is Greenville comparable? The weather is lovely now, but we need to be aware of the worst.

I hate the heat/humidity here, but Texas has had it much worse with the drought than we have here. There are times in August when I avoid going outside, but we end up going north to the mountains to escape the heat. You don't have that option in Texas.

Thanks for any and all feedback. Please feel free to include any other information that would help us know the area better!
The thing that gets me down about the area the most is it's visual appeal, or lack thereof. The main roads are ugly. The highways are ugly. My driving routes are based on avoiding the ugliness. Power lines, billboards, vacant strip malls, and trash...I just don't feel the pride. I feel a little embarrased when visitors come - there's a rush to get them downtown. I give them driving directions based on aesthetics, not speed.

While many people seem proud that there are no vehicle inspections here, I think it's obviously absurd that we allow some of the local cars to still be on the road. Every week I see a car or truck with plumes of smoke coming out of it. Leave the city, and you'll find so many people just burning their trash in a big metal barrel.

The air quality is bad here in the summers. The river in town is highly polluted.

If you have allergies, come prepared for them to get worse here.

I am just listing some things that don't get mentioned as often here. Despite all the "negatives," my wife and I have a very nice life here. But we moved here for a job, not the area.
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Old 10-14-2011, 06:54 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
5,402 posts, read 5,933,512 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Art123 View Post
The thing that gets me down about the area the most is it's visual appeal, or lack thereof. The main roads are ugly. The highways are ugly. My driving routes are based on avoiding the ugliness. Power lines, billboards, vacant strip malls, and trash...I just don't feel the pride. I feel a little embarrased when visitors come - there's a rush to get them downtown. I give them driving directions based on aesthetics, not speed.
I don't know what "Utopia" you came from, but I've traveled all over the U.S. and with very few exceptions, the urban & immediate suburban roads & highways in & around Greenville look like they could have been plucked out of Kansas City, Baltimore, Atlanta, or any other city you could name. No, it isn't all pretty, but I've yet to find a city that is, all the time and everywhere. Heck, Asheville, NC is no better in that regard.

Greenville is working on a master plan for streetscaping and designating key corridors to work on. "Rome wasn't built in a day" after all.
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Old 10-14-2011, 07:23 AM
 
Location: New York City
1,555 posts, read 2,179,491 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UpstateBooster View Post
I don't know what "Utopia" you came from, but I've traveled all over the U.S. and with very few exceptions, the urban & immediate suburban roads & highways in & around Greenville look like they could have been plucked out of Kansas City, Baltimore, Atlanta, or any other city you could name. No, it isn't all pretty, but I've yet to find a city that is, all the time and everywhere. Heck, Asheville, NC is no better in that regard.

Greenville is working on a master plan for streetscaping and designating key corridors to work on. "Rome wasn't built in a day" after all.
Rome may not have been built in a day.....but maybe if they would stop pumping all of the money on beautifying "Yuppie heaven" (downtown Greenville) then the other areas around Greenville would get the much needed face lift that it needs! The problem is that the city of Greenville is concerned about its downtown image and could care less how the areas in the county look.

Sorry but the areas around Greenville county deserve the same amount of attention as the downtown area. I understand that downtown is Greenville's main attraction and as such must live up to that standard......but it does not look very good to visitors when they leave the downtown area......sends people a message that Greenville officials just don't care.
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Old 10-14-2011, 07:54 AM
 
Location: North Greenville County!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewYorkBorn View Post
The problem is that the city of Greenville is concerned about its downtown image and could care less how the areas in the county look.
The City Of Greenville doesn't have the authority to go into the county and do anything. It's up to the County Government to decide to do something about how unincorporated areas of the county look.
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Old 10-14-2011, 07:58 AM
 
931 posts, read 869,292 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewYorkBorn View Post
Rome may not have been built in a day.....but maybe if they would stop pumping all of the money on beautifying "Yuppie heaven" (downtown Greenville) then the other areas around Greenville would get the much needed face lift that it needs! The problem is that the city of Greenville is concerned about its downtown image and could care less how the areas in the county look.
It's not realistic or necessary to beautify all 1600 miles of county roads. I don't know if you consider the intersection of Mauldin Rd & Augusta Rd, as well as Church St as downtown Greenville "Yuppie heaven", but those areas are being revitalized. Nicholtown has a master plan Nicholtown Master Plan

That being said, suburban sprawl is a problem, and a side effect is that many areas outside of the city of Greenville end up looking like classic suburban sprawl.
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Old 10-14-2011, 08:06 AM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikeoid View Post
It's not realistic or necessary to beautify all 1600 miles of county roads. I don't know if you consider the intersection of Mauldin Rd & Augusta Rd, as well as Church St as downtown Greenville "Yuppie heaven", but those areas are being revitalized. Nicholtown has a master plan Nicholtown Master Plan

That being said, suburban sprawl is a problem, and a side effect is that many areas outside of the city of Greenville end up looking like classic suburban sprawl.
Although it is still a work in progress, it was disappointing to see the telephone poles along Church Street be replaced with even bigger telephone poles. I wish the city would do more to minimize billboards and overhead power lines. They are ugly, and "cheapen" the look of the area, imo. Whenever I travel to NC, I am struck by how much more beautiful it is there. This is largely do to the fact that they have left more trees in the ground, and restricted the use of billboards and overhead power lines.
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Old 10-14-2011, 08:09 AM
 
Location: New York City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skunk Workz View Post
The City Of Greenville doesn't have the authority to go into the county and do anything. It's up to the County Government to decide to do something about how unincorporated areas of the county look.
True....and that needs to change. The way Greenville county looks reflects on the city of Greenville too. When visitors are driving around outside of downtown Greenville it does not matter to them whose responsibility (the city or the county) it is to do something about the visual appeal they just want to see something done!
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Old 10-14-2011, 08:15 AM
 
Location: New York City
1,555 posts, read 2,179,491 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikeoid View Post
It's not realistic or necessary to beautify all 1600 miles of county roads. I don't know if you consider the intersection of Mauldin Rd & Augusta Rd, as well as Church St as downtown Greenville "Yuppie heaven", but those areas are being revitalized. Nicholtown has a master plan Nicholtown Master Plan

That being said, suburban sprawl is a problem, and a side effect is that many areas outside of the city of Greenville end up looking like classic suburban sprawl.
Not suggesting that it is.....however major streets like:

Pleasantburg Drive
White Horse Road (major eyesore!)
Wade Hampton

All need to have a face lift. Revitalizing areas immediately outside of downtown's backyard is simply not enough. Forget county roads that lead in/out of Greenville but major streets need to have something done.
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Old 10-14-2011, 09:21 AM
 
7,995 posts, read 6,931,030 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckeely View Post
My husband and I are traveling the US by RV looking for a place we’d like to live, and we’re currently in Greenville. He’s from New Hampshire (too cold) and I’m from Texas (too hot) – we’re looking for someplace with a moderate climate and lots of outdoor activities. I’ve been reading forums about Greenville, and I have some specific questions I’d appreciate answered. I don’t mean to criticize Greenville or the SC way of life, so please don’t take my questions as antagonistic, only as an honest request for information, bearing in mind that the answers to these questions are largely subjective.

1. I’ve been concerned about mentions on forums of Greenville being “high crime”. What does this really mean? I talked to a couple nurses here who said Greenville has some gang problems, but that most violent crimes are domestic. Of all the cities I've lived in around the U.S., Greenville seems to have the least amount of crime. Never really noticed any crime here. Have not noticed gangs.....though I do know they are somewhat of a problem to the south in Columbia.
2. Every place has “bad areas,” usually low-income and higher-crime, the ones you wouldn’t walk through alone at night. How much of this does Greenville have, and does it fall along a racial/ethnic divide? Where are these areas, and how hard are they to avoid? The West Side of the city. Not much retail or any reason to go to that area.
3. What about Spartanburg and surrounding cities? I think of Spartanburg more as a suburb. It has some quaint older neighborhoods, but is lacking in quality retail, restaurants, etc. If you want Trader Joes, Whole Foods, higher end shopping and restaurants, you'll be driving over to Greenville.
4. Greenville seems a bit more progressive to me than some places we’ve visited, but SC is still the Bible belt. How religious is the atmosphere of Greenville? Are parents fighting to have prayer in schools? Does religion crop up in civic and community events? I'm a gay man and have felt totally comfortable in Greenville. Sure there are religious people here just like anywhere else, but everyone seems to get along well. My view is, it's a free country....if I'm free to openly talk about being gay....then that same freedom should be afforded to everyone, including religious people to talk about their religion. If you lived in Texas, then you were truely in the heart of the Bible belt with the huge, mega churches like Jan Crouch and hubby have. You won't find that here.
5. How liberal or conservative is the area – socially, politically, etc.? Is the “man is the head of the household / woman raises babies” attitude dominant among women? Fiscally conservative, socially liberal.
6. Greenville also looks more racially and ethnically diverse to me than other places we’ve been (Tennessee, for example) – is this the case? Is there racial tension and hostility? Lots of Germans, French, Spanish, Asian, Indian, etc due to the large international business community, major engineering hub and companies such as BMW, Michelin, Bosch, ZF, etc, etc, etc.
7. How bad is the summer heat/humidity? I know it’s less than Florida, but do you walk outside and immediately start dripping? I’m from Texas, and summer heat gets bad enough that you try not to go outside – is Greenville comparable? The weather is lovely now, but we need to be aware of the worst. Hot in the summer, but less humid than the deep south or Texas, where you are from. Beautiful falls. Cold winters with 2 or 3 snow / ice event per season. Beautiful springs.
Thanks for any and all feedback. Please feel free to include any other information that would help us know the area better!
See my notes above in blue.
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Old 10-14-2011, 09:50 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
5,402 posts, read 5,933,512 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewYorkBorn View Post
Rome may not have been built in a day.....but maybe if they would stop pumping all of the money on beautifying "Yuppie heaven" (downtown Greenville) then the other areas around Greenville would get the much needed face lift that it needs! The problem is that the city of Greenville is concerned about its downtown image and could care less how the areas in the county look.

Sorry but the areas around Greenville county deserve the same amount of attention as the downtown area. I understand that downtown is Greenville's main attraction and as such must live up to that standard......but it does not look very good to visitors when they leave the downtown area......sends people a message that Greenville officials just don't care.
City & county are run by two distinct governmental bodies.... If you actually had lived here once, you'd have known that....
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