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Downtown has same number of parking spaces today as it did Monday

Board asks for more information; City to hear alternative in executive session

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Tuesday, June 11, 2013

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Allen Fore' expresses to the Board of Architecture Review (BAR) his plans to secure two downtown properties, limiting parking access.

Jim Fair

Allen Fore' expresses to the Board of Architecture Review (BAR) his plans to secure two downtown properties, limiting parking access.



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Community, business and government leaders attended the BAR meeting at City Hall. Left to right: Allen Smith (Greater Greer Chamber of Commerce President/CEO), Hayne Griffin, Jr., (Mutual Home Store owner), Ed Driggers (City Administrator), and Reno Deaton (Greer Development Corporation President).

Jim Fair

Community, business and government leaders attended the BAR meeting at City Hall. Left to right: Allen Smith (Greater Greer Chamber of Commerce President/CEO), Hayne Griffin, Jr., (Mutual Home Store owner), Ed Driggers (City Administrator), and Reno Deaton (Greer Development Corporation President).



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The Board of Architecture Review, left to right: David Langley, Brandon Price, Linda Wood, Joada Hiatt and Marney Hannon.

Jim Fair

The Board of Architecture Review, left to right: David Langley, Brandon Price, Linda Wood, Joada Hiatt and Marney Hannon.

Parking in the Greer central business district has the same number of spaces available today as it did yesterday.

The Board of Architectural Review (BAR) tabled ruling on Alan Fore´s request this morning to have two of his properties – 117 Trade Street and 118/120 Victoria Street – approved for fence designs that would essentially prohibit public vehicles from parking at his businesses.

During the 90-minute public session, Fore’ and City Administrator Ed Driggers acknowledged talks between the parties are ongoing for a compromise with the mayor and city council to hear Driggers’ report in executive session tonight, after the regularly scheduled council meeting.

Fore´ and Driggers have discussed the city leasing the property on Trade Street, formerly occupied by Allen Tate Real Estate, and both parties likely sharing liability for the 28-spaces.

BAR approved Fore´s request to paint the trim of the building according to the historical association’s color palette but denied his request to paint the brick. The board also told Fore´ he may want to revisit painting the aluminum awnings for a canopy.

The board requested more information on:

• Fire and police safety clearance for enclosing the properties.

• More detailed description, and photos of fence designs proposed at 117 Trade Street.

• More detailed description of the proposed manual fence at 118/120 Victoria Street.

• Suggested Fore´ conduct a survey to confirm his property on Victoria Street is not conflicting with other potential owner(s).

• Tabled 2 bollards each at pedestrian crossings at 118/120 Victoria Street to prevent vehicle traffic upon public safety review.

“There is potential for long-range parking solutions but we will discuss some short-term solutions in executive session,” Driggers said. “The success of businesses in downtown is of utmost importance to us. In the grand scheme of parking downtown it’s not significant, but by location it is significant,” Driggers told the BAR. “We are keenly aware of the concern for parking downtown. It’s not a new issue but an ongoing issue.”

Driggers said protecting downtown’s historical designation is accomplished by the city’s ordinances and zoning. 

Still undecided is the property’s maintenance where a large pothole exists at the entrance off Trade Street and a smaller one near the drive-thru lanes. There is no public alley between Victoria Street and Poinsett as there is between Victoria and Randle on the east side of downtown. “With our desire to assist assembling that property, the city gave up the right to the public alley,” Driggers said.

Fore´ told the BAR in the beginning of meeting, “I have met with the Administrator and realize this is a hot topic.” He went on to describe the fence designs he proposed and other general upkeep to the property at 117 Trade Street.

David Langley asked Fore´, “What is driving this issue?”

“The parking lot needs cleanup from the wear and tear from trucks coming in and out,” Fore said. “Picking up beer bottles and being able to say to a future tenant, ‘here is your parking.’”

“I personally wish we could work something out on an agreement that would work for both of us,” Langley said. “There is a need at night for parking and (closing the Trade Street lot) won’t allow public access. One way in and out of that building (lot) would be a challenge. It doesn’t meet the dimensions of a typical parking lot.”

Allen Smith, Greater Greer Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, said, “It’s important to go on the record and explain how important parking is to downtown Greer. Access equals customers and that equals business. I am advocating what is good for private property owners, but also what is good for downtown Greer.”

The BAR approved Fore´ to paint the trim of the building with the approved color palette but requested more information on the materials of the fences and how they would operate.

Joada Hiatt, Marney Hannon, David Langley, Brandon Price and board commissioner Linda Wood all attended the meeting. Price recused himself from discussion and voting for the property at 118/120 Victoria Street because of a conflict of interest.

Among others attending the meeting were: Reno Deaton (Greer Development Corporation Executive Director), Kyle Mensing, GDC, Lisa Garland, Stomping Grounds, Denise VanderBerghe, Wild Ace, and Hayne Griffin, Jr., Mutual Home Store

Comments from the board:

Joada Hiatt: There is no way I am going to approve painting brick. I feel like I should have something to look at (truer fence examples), and not a rendering.

David Langley: We should check with police and fire on the public safety with these requests. The board would be remiss to approve something without regards to safety. The more you paint a building a color the more it is devalued historically.  Painting then becomes more of maintenance. Maybe more cleaning of the brick might be an option.

Linda Wood: I don’t feel I have enough information on how well the gates will work. I would also like more information of the actual details of the gate.

Marney Hannon: Any changes should keep the integrity of downtown.

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