Columbia Regional Business Report - December 5, 2022

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Plans revealed for $100M Richland Mall renovation

Richland Mall will be sold and demolished and a redevelopment project with an estimated value of $100 million will go up in its place, according to detailed plans released Nov. 9.

Southeastern Development of

Augusta, Ga., is under contract to buy the property at the intersection of Forest Drive and Beltline Boulevard.

City of Forest Acres officials in a news release called the plan the “single-largest economic development investment in Forest Acres in 35 years.”

The redevelopment plan for the 32-acre site calls for a mixed-

use property that includes retail, a brewery or tap room, a large green space for events and concerts, a grocery store and apartments, according to the release.

“We wanted a long-term solution for the mall property,” said Tom Andrews, a member of the Forest Acres City Council and mayor pro tem. “We’ve come to learn that to be successful, the

mall property has to be completely reimagined to deliver a thriving commercial space.”

On Oct. 18, Richland County Council approved up to $23 million in tax credits for redevelopment of the mall property, and Forest Acres City Council also passed a $3 million tax credit


By Krys Merryman and Christina Knauss

When Shannon Wilbanks and Joe Erwin, managing partners of Endeavor, left their advertising firm in 2015, they collaborated on how

they could provide an office-working environment with the energy, technology and training opportunities that they could get at larger agencies but weren’t able to access being in business as a sole proprietor or small business.

It was out of this concept that they realized they were talking about coworking.

“We hadn’t planned on being in the coworking game,” said Wilbanks. “It really grew out of that (concept). Our mission is to do whatever we can to help our members succeed, and that’s coming from a very genuine place.”

Coworking is the use of a collaborative workspace that offers an alternative way to work. In cowork-

ing spaces, people work independently or in groups to complete projects. This concept is popular, because it provides a sense of community and a conducive working atmosphere you wouldn’t be able to receive if working for a larger company.

Columbia Under Construction

INSIDE Upfront ................................ 2 SC State News 3 In Focus: Architecture, Engineering, Construction 13 List: Commercial Project Management Companies 19 At Work 20 Viewpoint 23
hub means 133 jobs on Bush River Road. Page 6 Productive partnership See what happens when a city and developers work toward a common goal. Page 13 Business showcase BOPs opens access for black-owned enterprise. Page 4
Page 6
New life for
site Distribution
Midlands pleasure Chick-fil-A chooses Lexington County distribution site.
Page 16 VOLUME 15 NUMBER 17 ■ COLUMBIABUSINESSREPORT.COM DECEMBER 5-DECEMBER 18, 2022 ■ $2.25 Part of the network Elemental
School project earns honor for
Page 14
Take a look at some of the Midlands’ latest construction projects.
COVID-19 pandemic brings work alternative to the forefront See MALL, Page 9 SHARING
The commons area of Expansive provides a quiet space for a coworker to get her work done. Members and operators say the pandemic has been good for the sector. (Photo/Provided) See CO-WORKING, Page 8

South Carolina Christmas trees a growing sector

While North Carolina produces the second-largest number of Christmas trees in the U.S. each year, the state known more for palmetto logs than fir trees also contributes to the annual harvest of live-cut trees.

South Carolina is an agribusiness state with the forestry sector accounting for billions of dollars and tens of thousands of direct and indirect jobs across the state. In terms of employment, forestry is the No. 1 industry in South Carolina, data from the S.C. Forestry Commission show, including the more than half-a-million trees growing at any one time on the state’s 23 tree farms.

Compared to North Carolina, the Palmetto State’s contribution to the nation’s annual Christmas trees harvest is more of a potted plant than an old-growth forest, but like most agribusiness subsectors, Christmas tree growing is a highly sustainable business that contributes to habitat, prevents soil erosion, and provides many direct and indirect jobs across the state.

Even though Christmas trees on their own aren’t a huge business for South Carolina foresters, tree growing and harvesting, including the production of biomass, is a vital sector for the state’s economy, beating out sectors such as tourism, health care and manufacturing.

Christmas tree production in the Southeast 2020

Among Southeastern states, South Carolina grows the third-most Christmas trees behind the juggarnaut of North Carolina and Virginia, with 24.1 million and 4.3 million, respectively. Below are the top five producing states behind North Carolina and Virginia for live Christmas tree production on farms in each state.

Christmas trees grow for up to eight years before being tall enough to be sold. At any one time, tree farms have thousands of trees of different sizes in production.

Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cultivated Christmas Trees On Operation 2020

Top states for Christmas tree sales

The following states produce the most Christmas tree sales in 2019 for the more than 11.6 million sold that year.

State Trees sold Oregon 3,844,562 North Carolina 2,019,686 Michigan 1,922,961 Wisconsin 784,617 Pennsylvania 652,891

Ever-growing Christmas tree sales in SC

In 2019, South Carolina sold more than 16,000 Christmas trees for nearly $900,000 in sales, a number that has increased each time the U.S. Department of Agriculture has surveyed the sector. Year Annual sales in S.C. 2019 $883,342 2017 $869,000 2014 $841,274 2012 $666,000 2009 $227,194

“We’ve had high standards from the beginning for what we wanted in that area – we knew what kind of development we wanted and what we didn’t want.”
— West Columbia Mayor Tem Miles

SC Biz News Briefs

$4.2 million investment will create 42 new jobs for industry serving shed construction

Shed Windows and More Inc., a window and building materials manufacturer and distributor, will expand operations in Horry County. The company’s $4.2 million investment will create 42 new jobs over the next five years, the company said in a news release from the Commerce Department.

Founded in 2001, Shed Windows and More Inc. manufactures and distributes a variety of building materials including windows, doors, hinges, shutters, skylights, hardware and more. The company serves both do-it-yourself builders and contractors around the world.

“Our company has been around for more than 20 years and part of Horry County since 2013,” Vice President Thomas Slack said in the news release. “We value our employees, our customers and the community. Shed Windows and More Inc. is excited to expand our operations to meet the growth of our customers all over the United States. Thank you to everyone who has shared a part in our expansion, and we look forward to more great opportunities in the future.”

Located at 2342 Chestnut Road in the Horry County town of Longs, Shed Windows and More Inc.’s expansion will include the construction of a new 50,000-square-foot facility which will allow the company to manufacture double-pane vinyl windows in-house — increasing its business and workflow.

“Horry County is devoted to supporting and growing industry, and we are proud to announce the expansion of Shed Windows and More Inc.,” County Council Chairman Johnny Gardner said in the release. “The company represents success in our county and proof that we are a great place to have a business. On behalf of Horry County Council and our staff, congratulations. Thank you for being part of Team Horry.”

The expansion is expected to be complete in 2023. Individuals interested in joining company should visit SC Works.

Shed Windows and More Inc. was started by Theresa Slack in 2001 with the website being added in 2008, so do-it-yourself builders would have a website giving them access to materials to build a small building, such as a shed, playhouse, treehouse, chicken coop or deer stand and find everything in one place.

Shed Windows and More Inc. has won the Camp Hill Best of the Year award two years running as a local business in Horry County. Company products have been seen multiple times on HGTV and the Discovery Channel and as part of various DIY shows, including a show done about the Hobbit House of Montana, a unique lodging facility.

With publications in the Upstate, Columbia and Charleston, as well as a statewide magazine, SC Biz News covers the pulse of business across South Carolina. Above are excerpts from our other publications. 3 December 5-December 18, 2022
MYRTLE BEACH Charleston Regional Business Journal Spot the Robodog Benefitfocus agrees to $570M deal for sale to Voya SC Ports turning in strong performance since pandemic By Ross Norton V Under terms agreement Benefitfocus serves brokerage T POWER LIFTERS SCBIZNEWS.COM NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2022 FUTURE FARMS How technology is reshaping agribusiness in SC Teenagers learn about agriculture careers ACRE program gives ag entrepreneurs leg up V INSIDE Spot the Robodog governor’s office behind Texas company invests $62M investment in Spartanburg County A Work begins on former Rick Erwin location in Greenville Shed Windows and More developed a webiste to expand sales in the do-it-yourself market. (Photo/Provided) JANUARY 23 WORKFORCE/STAFFING List: Professional Staffing Firms, HR & Payroll Advertising Deadline: January 9 FEBRUARY 13 HOSPITALITY/TOURISM List: Hotels, Event Spaces Advertising Deadline: January 30 MARCH 20 ARCHITECTURE/ENGINEERING/ CONSTRUCTION List: General Contractors, Engineering Firms Advertising Deadline: March 6 APRIL 10 INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY List: IT Services, Security Firms Advertising Deadline: March 27 For advertising information, call Rick Jenkins at 864.720.1224 Target your market in an upcoming issue of the Columbia Regional Business Report

Jason Thomas, executive editor • 864.568.7570

Ross Norton, managing editor-content • 864.720.1222

Christina Lee Knauss, sta writer • 803.753.4327

Krys Merryman, sta writer • 864.640.4418

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Shop dedicated to showcasing black businesses

Staff Report

Ashop dedicated to showcasing products from Black-owned companies held its grand opening in Columbia on Thursday, Nov. 17.

BOPs, which stands for “Black-owned products,” is located inside NoMA Warehouse at 2222 Sumter St.

The shop will offer a wide variety of products including clothing, personal care, cleaning products and more.

Owner Layla Sewell won a pitch competition with Benedict College’s creative entrepreneurs, which led her to open the store, according to a news release. Sewell said the store’s mission is to “create a tangible shopping experience where Black businesses are supported and Black people are celebrated.”

Columbia Mayor Daniel Rickenmann noted that BOPs adds to the number of small woman-owned shops that have recently opened in the city.

Rick Jenkins, group publisher • 864.720.1224

Karl Krull, business development director • 843.849.3143

Account Executives

Ryan Downing, senior account executive • 864.720.1221

Amanda Alford, multimedia account executive • 864.720.1223

Shannon Pollard, multimedia account executive • 843.804.6094

Tony Rossi, multimedia account executive • 864.720.1974

Jim Wheeler, multimedia account executive • 843.849.3104


Kim McManus, events manager • 843.849.3116

Lauren Medders, event manager/manufacturing conference • 864.720.1220

Accounting Subscription Services • 877.615.9536

“We continue to push in efforts to grow our small businesses because they are the ones that are going to grow with us and

who are going to grow and invest in our community,” Rickenmann said.

Store hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9

p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Reach Christina Lee Knauss at 803-753-4327.

Nephron partners with NY company ahead of product expansion

Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corp. and New York-based Sharps Technology have formed a new partnership focused on developing and sharing best practices in manufacturing, product development and quality as Nephron prepares to launch its InjectEZ expansion.

“Sharps Technology has identified a unique opportunity to collaborate with a leader in the industry like Nephron,” Robert Hayes, CEO of Sharps Technology, said in a news release. “Through my previous industry experience supporting and working with most of the leading healthcare and pharmaceutical companies in the world, it was easy for me to evaluate Nephron as a potential partner.”

Sharps Technology is a medical device

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and pharmaceutical packaging company specializing in drug delivery systems.

Nephron Pharmaceuticals produces and manufactures generic inhalation

solutions and pre-filled, sterile syringes through its 503B Outsourcing Facility.

The company’s new InjectEZ project will enable Nephron to manufacture its own syringes, rubber stoppers and plungers.

“We are excited to kick off a partnership with Sharps Technology as our InjectEZ expansion project opens,” said Nephron CEO Lou Kennedy. “Just as the InjectEZ syringe manufacturing facility is poised to play a critical role in assisting those we work with on tackling emerging public health crises, Sharps Technology also offers key solutions to healthcare challenges.”

Sharps will also work with Nephron to develop a pharmaceuticals service program to support health care customers that need solutions and products to support their business, according to the release.


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South Carolina’s Media Engine for Economic Growth Layla Sewell (second from right) joins Columbia Mayor Daniel Rickenmann and other officials at the grand opening of her shop, BOPs, located at 2222 Sumter St. (Photo/City of Columbia)
“Sharps Technology has identified a unique opportunity to collaborate with a leader in the industry like Nephron.”
Robert Hayes CEO, Sharps Technology

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Company to invest $9.5M in former Walmart site

Aformer Walmart at 1326 Bush River Road in Columbia has been sold to a computer wholesale company, Executive Personal Computers Inc. The company’s $9.5 million investment will create 133 new jobs.

Colliers South Carolina brokers Chuck Salley, Dave Mathews, Thomas Beard and John Peebles represented seller Bunrootis LLC in the sale of the 203,819-square-foot former retail space to Executive Personal Computers, according to a news release. Salley is also managing director of industrial services in Colliers’ Columbia offices.

The buyer, EPC, buys and sells used computer hardware and will use the property for warehousing and distribution of product. The new facility will serve as

the company’s East Coast hub.

“We’re proud to grow our relationship with Columbia and the great state of South Carolina,” said EPC president Pat

Laughlin. “This new facility aligns with our global growth of 20 locations across the Americans and Europe, and helps to deliver on our mission of offering a full

suite of sustainable, secure and environmentally responsible methods of IT disposal for our clients up and down the East Coast.”

Bunrootis LLC is an investor and developer that acquires, develops or redevelops and manages industrial assets primarily across the Southeast and central United States. The firm initially purchased 1326 Bush River Road in early 2022.

“The adaptive reuse of former big box retail stores is a trend occurring across the country as consumers lean into e-commerce and the need for big box bricksand-mortar is diminished,” Salley said. “Bunrootis was a pleasure to work with and we are glad we were able to quickly sell this property for them to an industrial user, bringing new jobs to Columbia.”

Reach Christina Lee Knauss at 803-753-4327.

Foam packing company to open in Lee County

ATennessee-based company that specializes in customized foam packing material has leased a 117,865-square-foot industrial building on 20 acres in Bishopville.

EFP LLC, or Engineered Foam Packaging, recently leased the facility located at 227 Browntown Road, according to a news release from Colliers South Carolina. This will be EFP’s first location in South Carolina.

Colliers South Carolina’s Church Salley, Dave Mathews, Thomas Beard and John Peebles represented Weston Inc. in the transaction.

EFP specializes in foam molding and fabrication solutions for customers in

Chick-fil-A to

Chick-fil-A Supply, a wholly owned subsidiary of Chickfil-A, will invest $80 million to establish a new distribution center in Lexington County.

The new facility will be located in the Saxe Gotha Industrial Park and create 165 new jobs, according to a news release from the S.C. Department of Commerce.

“Chick-fil-A is a brand beloved by many locals, and Chick-fil-A Supply’s announcement will give people a new reason to love it even more – career

the consumer product, automotive, recreational vehicle, building product and agricultural markets, as well as re-sellers. The company also provides a wide range of cold chain solutions for the

pharmaceutical and food industries. In addition to the new South Carolina warehouse, EFP also has locations in Indiana, Alabama, Tennessee and Nevada.

The Bishopville property is part of Weston’s Southeast Industrial Properties portfolio. Cleveland-based Weston is a commercial real estate owner and developer with nearly six million square feet of assets I South Carolina, making it one of the state’s largest privately held industrial landlords.

“227 Browntown and Lee County is a great location for EFP,” said Eileen McConville, asset manager for Weston Inc. “We are excited they are breaking into the South Carolina market and excited to work with them as they grow their business in the state.”

Grant Butler will serve as the property manager at the Browntown Road location.

Reach Christina Lee Knauss at 803-753-4327.

$80M distribution center in Lexington County

opportunities,” said Matthew Shaffer, chairman of the Central South Carolina Alliance, an economic development alliance focused on economic advancement in the region.

Once completed, the facility will supply restaurants around the region, with a special focus on addressing distribution issues such as frequent, high-volume delivery, varied delivery environments and rapidly changing needs, according to the release.

Founded in 2020, Chick-fil-A Supply supplements Chick-fil-A’s distribution network and provides greater flexibility for the company’s supply chain.

“Our new distribution center in

Lexington County provides us with a tremendous opportunity to grow our business and create jobs that will attract diverse talent from across the region,” Josh Grote, executive director of Chick-fil-A Supply. “We’re excited to expand our footprint in South Carolina with an investment in the local community that helps us serve our franchise operators, licensees and their teams. ‘

Operations are expected to begin in 2024. People interested in applying for jobs at the new facility should visit the company’s careers page.

Reach Christina Lee Knauss at 803-753-4327.

6 December 5-December 18, 2022
A former Walmart at 1326 Bush River Road in Columbia has been sold to Executive Personal Computers, a Columbia-based computer wholesaler. (Photo/Provided) EFP LLC, or Engineered Foam Packaging, recently leased property at 227 Browntown Road in Bishopville for its first facility in South Carolina. (Photo/NAI Columbia)
“Chick-fil-A is a brand developed by many locals and Chick-fil-A Supply’s announcement will give people a new reason to love it even more ...”
Shaffer Chairman, Central South Carolina Alliance
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And the popularity of collaborative work environments is skyrocketing in a postCOVID world, as the pandemic changed the very nature of how people think about the workplace, with remote work and hybrid setups becoming the norm.

“It was invigorating to see all these people just trying to work their jobs and all with the attitude of ‘I’m going to figure it out’ despite COVID challenges,” Wilbanks said.

As Wilbanks and Erwin got into the coworking industry, Wilbanks said they realized there is a broad spectrum of people who need that type of work environment. Whether someone works at a small business and needs 24/7 access to their office, to entrepreneurs and sole proprietors, to people who work remotely for another company who don’t need a private office but a single workspace, to people who love working from home but want to get out of the house one day a week, or sole business travelers.

Endeavor opened in May 2016 and is a membership-based coworking community allowing for a space for a diverse range of peers who offer varying services and experiences in addition to providing training opportunities, networking events and business consulting for business professionals.

Wilbanks said they decided on the Greenville One Center space in downtown Greenville for this coworking vision, because it is ideally located in the heart of downtown with 24/7 doorman security, LEED-certified features, and the space also has a private gym for members.

“People light up when they step off our elevator and into our space, pleasantly surprised at what we have here,” she added.


Ramon Nieves-Lugo, president of Unicomm Media Group, founded and leads a successful Hispanic marketing agency of 12 employees, and has had a daytime membership at Endeavor almost since its inception.

For Nieves-Lugo, he said his main purpose for choosing coworking as his choice of office space versus a traditional office setting was the cost benefit.

“We originally had an office for a few members, but it has changed since COVID and everyone doesn’t work at the office anymore,” he said. “Commercial space is also expensive, especially being in downtown. The appeal of this space is high since its in a prime location, especially for sole proprietors and small businesses. The opportunity to connect with other individuals in the area is there, too.”

Even if a business has a lot of employees, said Nieves-Lugo, but doesn’t need a 30,000 square foot office space, this coworking option may suit them as well.

“It seems this type of working is the future,” he added.

Every company’s journey is different, said Wilbanks.

“The interesting thing about coworking, especially if you’re in an office, is people are increasingly putting a higher value on their time and living their lives while weighing the cost of rent for their office spaces. You

pay one monthly payment if you have an office here, that covers your office, the internet, the coffee, the cleaning, office machines, everything you need. So not only are those things you would have to otherwise pay separately, it frees you up to do the things only you can do, because we have all those other expenses covered, which takes off the administrative burden to some degree.”

Endeavor Greenville isn’t the only coworking concept in the city that sees similar inquiries with not only local entrepreneurs and sole proprietors but remote employees in industries such as web and tech, too.


Back in 2007, Atlas Local managing partner and tech entrepreneur Chris Merritt said he and his managing partners just needed office spaces at the time. They had no idea the co-op they created would lead to operating a coworking business, which still doesn’t even seem like a business to Merritt, he said. In 2016, they moved into one of the renovated loft apartment mill buildings in the West End of Greenville, West Village Lofts.

“Although we have grown, we still like to keep that co-op vibe,” said Merritt, who has a desk in the general space versus a private office. “Sure, my name is on the lease, but everyone here is an equal.”

Being surrounded by like-minded indi-

viduals who aren’t your coworkers is an ideal, best-case scenario for him and other members, Merritt said.

“When I want to disengage from work, I’m in an environment where I can easily do that (versus a traditional office setting),” he said. “If I’m burnt out and want to make a pot of coffee or sit and draw on the couch, there is no one there to bother me about some report that is due or something like that.”

Because Atlas Local is attached to residential units, members could cut out of work early and go to the pool or play a game of cornhole or pool after work as well as the ability to host networking events.

“I’ve always held the opinion that this is a sustainable approach to work, one that I personally want, along with the younger generations entering the workforce,” he said.

Humans need to be around other humans, but only being around each other because of your place of employment isn’t necessarily the healthiest model, said Merritt.

“Being around other people who share your passions also encourages entrepreneurial mindsets,” he added. “I wouldn’t be where I am today if I didn’t surround myself with people like that. Our community here tends to organically work with each other, not something we push, it just sort of happens and it makes sense as you’re around

other intelligent and creative people.”

Another aspect of remote work and coworking is allowing for the opportunity to hire from anywhere. Merritt said for the average job these days, people can work remotely, which in turn doesn’t allow physical proximity to limit the talent pool.

“Limiting your company to only hiring employees that are able to drive to your physical office, I think that mindset will be completely gone in the coming years,” he added. “I see less and less of it.”

Coworking spaces in Columbia run the gamut from smaller spaces in historic buildings to large buildings that have been converted from traditional offices to coworking locations.

FemmeX, a coworking space and social club dedicated mainly to woman-owned startups and entrepreneurs is located at 1501 Richland St.

SOCO offers coworking at two locations: SOCO 80808, located in 11,000 square feet of space inside a post-industrial building at 808 Lady St., and SOCO BullStreet, inside a historic building in the BullStreet District, one of the city’s hottest growing residential and business communities.

One of the largest coworking spaces in Columbia belongs to Expansive, a Chicago-based company founded in 2012 that currently offers coworking and other flexible workspace options at 48 locations nationwide. In the Carolinas, the company has offices in Charlotte and Columbia.

Expansive purchased the 12-story building at 1122 Lady St. in 2021 and currently offers a variety of work options in 159,013 square feet of space. The site includes everything from SmartSuites, high-tech office spaces for large teams, and smaller rental office spaces to a variety of options for smaller businesses and individual workers.

Jeff Barnes, Expansive’s area sales manager for the Carolinas, said customers at the Midlands office come from every age, demographic and career type.

“I have everyone from students who just can’t get their work done in their dorm to businesses whose workers are working remote, to startups,” Barnes said. “We see a little bit of everything. We have insurance

8 December 5-December 18, 2022
An Endeavor Greenville member works on her computer of the coworking enterprise in the Greenville One Tower. (Photo/Contributed by Shannon Wilbanks)
CO-WORKING, from Page 1
Members can work or hang out in the common area at Industious Charleston. (Photo/Industrious)

package for the redevelopment.

“We’ve seen the potential in the property for years and the location has huge appeal,” Jason Long, vice president of Southeastern Development, said in a statement. “Forest Acres and Richland County shared our vision of taking this functionally obsolete mall, demolishing the majority of the structures and redeveloping the property into mixed-use development. We look forward to delivering a space that can be enjoyed by the entire community.”

Richland Mall first opened in 1961 as an open-air shopping mall, and then in the 1980s was converted to Richland Fashion Mall, an indoor venue with a food court and large parking garage. Occupancy has dwindled over the past 10 to 15 years, with currently only three tenants occupying nearly a million square feet of retail space. The structure also has

fallen into disrepair in recent years. The only two anchor stores remaining at the current mall are Barnes and Noble and Belk.

Southeastern is expected to close on the property soon and then hire an architect to begin drawing up a site plan, a process that will take about six months,

lem for too many, according to Barnes.

according to the news release. Long said Southeastern plans to rehab the old Parisian department store building along Forest Drive, which eventually will become the new site of Belk. After that, Southeastern will begin tearing down most of the rest of the existing structure, which is largely made

of concrete.

“The current structure is an uninviting concrete fortress,” Long said. “The mall was added on to so many times over the years that it doesn’t feel like a modern planned project. Thus, retailers don’t want to lease at the site because it’s not a good shopping experience. It will take us years to demolish and redevelop this property, but that’s what must happen.”

Current estimates by Southeastern indicate it will be four or five years before the first phase of the project, including mixed retail, apartments and a 100,000-square-foot grocery store, will open. The grocery tenant is yet to be named.

Plans call for the construction footprint of the new development to be about one-third of the current mall’s size, with about 215,000 square feet of retail plus apartment homes.

Reach Christina Lee Knauss at 803-753-4327.

companies, law firms, tech companies, you name it using our spaces. If you can do business from a laptop, you can use a coworking space.”

Like most coworking spaces, Expansive offers an option where customers can pay for simple access to a table or couch in one of the building’s open lounge spaces, which includes high-speed internet and access to copiers and other office equipment.

Sharing space doesn’t seem to be a prob-

“Our dedicated desks are sold out right now,” he said. “It’s our most popular option because members always have access to the space. It just depends on their schedule and when they want to do business.”

Barnes believes coworking will only continue to expand as people who got used to working from home during the pandemic seek other options rather than a commute to the same office every day.

“The age of the traditional workspace

is starting to go away because people are realizing the amount of money it takes to rent an entire building, outfit it and get people to come to a traditional workspace,” he said. “That’s just not what people are wanting anymore.”

In contrast to Endeavor and Atlas Local, FemmeX, and in comparison to Expansive, Industrious is a national coworking firm that is opening a location on King Street in Charleston, which is slated to open in early December.

and regional director for the Midwest and Southeast Industrious locations, said the company wants to provide other companies and employees with a space that is unique and inspiring.

“Charleston is a fast-growing business community, and we believe our surroundings can greatly impact the way people work,” said Besler. “We want to support that concept in building and changing the way people work. We want to adapt as a community grows, which looks different in each community we serve.”

5-December 18, 2022 9 December 5-December 18, 2022
MALL, from Page 1
Plans for the redevelopment of Richland Mall by Southeastern Development include retail, a brewery or taproom, green space, apartments and a grocery store. (Rendering/Provided)
Page 8 Trusted Trusted partners who want to see Columbia thrive as much as you do. We are NAI Columbia.

Why this tech company sees agriculture as the future

Matthew Sanford grew up wondering how the food system worked. No one in his family is in the industry, so he explored his curiosity.

“I had recognized the agriculture industry has its challenges and many inefficiencies,” he said.

It was a time when farmers’ markets were starting to boom and become a major trend in the U.S.

He decided to grow a small hydroponic tomato farm and had to sell and market his tomatoes.

“I realized quickly how hard it was to be a small farmer, to deal with a farmers’ market, to deal with little sales here and there, and

have to deal with a business that had a lot of overhead,” said Sanford, CEO of Agulus. “So, you’re looking at these really low margins, high overhead, and looking at all the other farmers and wondering how they’re doing it.”

He said he then realized there are subsidies and tax breaks, programs and other things that prop up agriculture.

“But no one talks much about how little farmers make and if they continue making so little, they will all start to go out of business,” said Sanford. “And since, that has been the trend.”

Enter Agulus, a Greenville-based technology company focused on providing innovative software solutions by offering real-time risk exposure, market positioning, hedging, forward contracting and business operating technologies for large agribusinesses to empower the American agriculture industry with supply chain automation technology.

The company connects farmers, brokers, advisors and more in one platform. Agu-

lus makes it easy for agribusinesses to work together by providing software that doesn’t have to be overly complicated and frustrating to consumers.

“We enjoy being able to provide these tools to farmers,” said Sanford. “We spend a lot of time trying to find a path to provide our technology to those who have trouble with access to it.”

Sanford said he originally classified the technology company as a startup three years ago, which wasn’t a good fit, so it changed up its model last year and went back to the basics in building the business by reaching out to agribusinesses directly, offering their services.

Related content: How technology is reshaping South Carolina’s agribusiness industry

Since the agriculture industry has been somewhat resistant to change over the years, getting into the agribusiness technology space has been difficult.

“But we are very excited to get through some projects and get our hands on additional products, such as within the dairy industry,” said Sanford. “We plan on bringing more farms directly to the program. That’s really what we are passionate about and how we want to make a big impact. How we feel we can make a big impact is by providing all farms with the same tools and resources.”

Technological advances within the industry will allow for more transparency, better food safety, higher food quality, with more sustainability as the end game, said Sanford.

“We want to make America itself more productive,” he added. “When we look forward to the future, we still have an overpopulation crisis on the entire planet to deal with. The United States is poised to provide solutions to this issue through agriculture, which is why it’s crucial to pay more attention to it.”

Reach Krys at 864-640-4418.

Organization lays down radioactive challenge for college students

Savannah River Mission Completion has partnered with Claflin University to challenge students to improve the

method for removing and replacing radioactively contaminated equipment inside the Savannah River Site’s salt waste processing facility.

The partnership is part of an ongoing effort at SRS to support historically Black

colleges and universities and also aims at strengthening the school’s science, technology, engineering, and mathematics curriculum, also known as STEM, according to a news release.

SRMC is one of the main employers at the site, tasked with the safe reduction of curies, or radioactive material, in aging waste tanks at the site.

Students will be working on ways to improve the method for removing and replacing the radioactively contaminated device called the strip effluent coalescer within the processing facility’s solvent recovery system. The coalescer combines small droplets of solvent to form larger droplets, enabling their separation from the high-activity salt waste, according to the release.

Any proposed improvements would both use fewer resources and reduce the potential for radiation exposure to workers during removal, transport and replacement of the equipment, the release said. The current process involves the hands-on use of a specially designed transport cart and crane.

“One of our goals is for the students to

consider all possibilities for making our processes safer and better inside the salt waste processing facility,” said Dave Olson, SRMC’s president and program manager. “We want to motivate students to solve real-world technical issues.”

Karina Liles, Claflin’s interim chair of mathematics and computer science, said the students will work hard to develop a safe and practical alternative.

“Our students are up to the task, ready to tackle both technical and operational challenges,” Liles said. “Throughout their STEM training, our focus has been hands-on, problem-based learning. This real-world challenge presents them with a wonderful opportunity for growth, and we are grateful for the opportunity provided by this partnership.”

The partnership is part of the Capstone program, SRMC’s education outreach that introduces various SRS operations to students, helping them grow real-world skillsets while also developing potential employees to support SRS work. The STEM project began with the fall semester and continues until May 2023.

10 December 5-December 18, 2022
Local business news updates... as they happen! Follow @SCBIZNEWS on twitter to get breaking news and information on businesses in the Midlands. @SCBIZNEWS Follow us on Twitter for the inside scoop on local business news. For advertising information, contact Rick Jenkins at (864) 720-1224 or
Sanford Engineering students from Claflin University will work to develop an improved method for removing media from the strip effluent coalescer at the Savannah River Site’s salt waste processing facility. (Photo/Provided)

Woman named Goodwill’s Veteran of the Year

AGreenville woman who provedher dedication to her country and her family has been named the 2022 Goodwill Industries International Veteran of the Year.

The award, named the Carol and Tommy Moore Veteran of the Year Award, honors a military veteran and Goodwill employee who has shown great progress and accomplishment in overcoming challenges to finding employment.

Even with 20 years of military service and a four-year degree, Sheila Gilmore struggled to find work because of 15-year employment gap spent as a stay-at-home mom and nurse, caretaker and rehab coach for her son, who suffered a traumatic brain injury in an auto accident.

Gilmore joined the U.S. Army in 1983, serving around the world and achieving the rank of sergeant 1st class before her retirement in 2003, according to a news release from Goodwill Industries of the Upstate/ Midlands. Gilmore went to night school and earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology while serving in the Army.

She moved to Greenville in 2005 for an inspection job that she couldn’t accept in the end after learning it was third shift. Then her oldest son was in the car accident that led her to being his primary health caretaker. Although doctors told her he would never

regain his memory, she devoted herself to his rehabilitation. Today he owns a trucking business, the news release said.

After 15 years out of the workforce, raising children and rehabilitating her son, Gilmore struggled to find employment. She applied for jobs in industries in and out of her field but she said employers seemed more concerned with her time out of the workforce than in her skillset. In 2019, she was hired as a retail associate at a Goodwill retail store in Greenville for Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands South Carolina, which turned out to be an opportunity that opened other doors, the release said.

She learned her job well enough that

she was asked to become a peer coach to new associates. After a year, Gilmore was promoted into the E-commerce division in 2020 where she received a pay raise and learned a new side of retail. Since 2020, she has become a go-to for her managers and a leader to her peers, the release said.

“When I look back at the obstacles I encountered regarding employment; it was God’s will for me to work at Goodwill,” Gilmore said in the news release. “Serving others is the best thing in life and helps you to have a selfless and humble mindset.”

Gilmore also volunteered for the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Employee Resource Group where she participated on commit-

tees and helped drive DEI principles in the organization.

“Sheila’s perseverance and dedication to both her work and serving others have helped her grow tremendously in her job,” Patrick Michaels, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands South Carolina, said in the release. “She has also brought a unique set of skills to her role having served in the Army that have enabled her to lead and take on new opportunities.”

Goodwill Industries of the Upstate/Midlands South Carolina is a locally owned and operated non-profit within the Goodwill Industries International network. The organization operates 40 stores across 16 counties with proceeds going to job training and education programs.

“At Goodwill, we are committed to helping people reach their full potential through learning and the power of work,” Steven C. Preston, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International, said in the release.

“Sheila’s unwavering dedication to both her work and her family are inspiring, and we’re pleased that Goodwill can play a role in helping people like Sheila achieve their career goals.”

Goodwill Industries of the Upstate/Midlands South Carolina is a locally owned and operated non-profit within the Goodwill Industries International Inc. network. Founded in May 1973, the organization turns donations into training opportunities for job seekers.



5-December 18, 2022 11 December 5-December 18, 2022 Please join us for the 16th annual RILEY-WILKINS
Reception | 7
Dinner and Awards Presentation
Hosted by Secretary Dick Riley, Ambassador David Wilkins, and Furman University President Elizabeth Davis TUESDAY, JANUARY 10, 2023 6 p.m.
Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, 1101 Lincoln
Roland Gardner CEO, Beaufort-Jasper-Hampton Comprehensive Health Services, Inc. (retired) 2023 LEGISLATIVE LEADERSHIP AWARD WINNER
FOR TICKETS visit or call
Hon. Thomas Alexander S.C. Senate President
864.235.8330 Presenting Sponsor: THE RILEY INSTITUTE SOUTH CAROLINA
Tommy and Carol Moore present Sheila Gilmore with the award honoring her as veteran of the year. Also pictured is Pat Michaels, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands SC. (Photo/Jarid Munsch)

The Federal Reserve did what was expected by raising the funds rate 0.75% to a range of 3.75-4.0%. It also indicated that it would soon be appropriate to slow the pace of tightening. That, too, was expected. But the euphoria was short-lived when Fed Chair Powell added in the post-meeting press conference that the “ultimate level of interest rates will be higher than previously expected.” That was not expected and sent the markets in a tizzy. The Fed’s thoughts about the new peak funds rate were not available at this meeting but will be released following the next FOMC gathering on December 13-14. Unfortunately, leaving such a statement open-ended set off a flurry of speculation. In September the Fed suggested that the funds rate would peak at 4.6% at the end of this year. Is he now talking about 5.0%? 5.5%? Higher? How high does the Fed think the “real” funds rate might go? When does it get to that level? Which measure of inflation will it use to make that determination?

We wonder why everybody remains

so laser-focused on the Fed and overanalyzes every utterance from a Fed official. The reality is that the Fed has not understood what was happening with inflation since it first began to rise rapidly in early 2021. As a result, it was at least a year late in initiating the tightening process. The first rate hike was not until March 2022. Meanwhile, it has steadily upped its assessment of the peak funds rate – from 2.1% in December of last year to 2.8% in March, 3.8% in June, and 4.6% in September. Who knows what it will say next month? But given this track record, who cares?

The Fed seems to think that a +0.5% real funds rate represents a “neutral” policy stance. It envisions a 2.5% funds rate coupled with a 2.0% inflation rate. That may not be a bad assessment when inflation is steady around its targeted 2.0% pace. But inflation is not even close to 2.0% and who knows exactly when and how quickly it will retreat?

Historically, when the Fed has embarked on a path of tightening, the funds rate has had to rise several percentage points higher than the inflation rate to slow the economy and reduce inflation. For example, prior to the 2008-09 recession the real funds rate climbed to +3.0% before the economy finally began to respond. In the 2000 recession it was +4.0%. And in the late 1970’s when

inflation rate was double-digit and well entrenched it took a real funds rate of +8.0% to do the trick.

The calculation of the appropriate real funds rate going forward is tricky. The real funds rate depends, of course, upon the level of the funds rate. Our sense is that the Fed will continue to raise the funds rate from 4.5% at the end of this year to 6.0% by the middle of next year. That seems high, but the real funds rate by that time will be slightly less than +2.0% depending upon which measure of inflation one chooses to use.

The CPI is the most widely recognized inflation measure. By the middle of next year we believe the core CPI will have slowed from 6.0% currently to 4.4%. The Fed’s preferred measure of inflation is the core personal consumption expenditures deflator. We estimate the core PCE will have slowed from 5.1% currently to 4.1%. If the funds rate is 6.0% the real funds rate by the middle of next year will be somewhere between 1.6-1.9% depending upon which inflation measure one chooses to use. So while a 6.0% funds rate may sound high, in real terms it is not excessive.

From the Fed’s viewpoint there is little danger of dumping the economy into a recession with a 6.0% funds rate and a real rate between 1.6-1.9%. If the economy should begin to slide, the Fed can

quickly lower the funds rate to provide the required stimulus. The starting point will not be far from where it should be normally. That is in sharp contrast to earlier this year when the funds rate was 0.2%, core inflation was 6.4%, and the real funds rate was -6.2%. What in the world was the Fed thinking by letting that happen? It believed at the time that a neutral funds rate was +0.5%. How could it have been concerned that raising the funds rate -- multiple times -- would run the risk of pushing the economy into recession? That makes no sense. Even today with the funds rate at 4.0% and the core CPI at 6.0%, a -2.0% real funds rate carries with it little risk of over-tightening and triggering the long-awaited recession. By the middle of next year the story may be a bit different. The real funds rate will be much higher and the economy will be much closer to the recession which we expect to begin in early 2024.

From 1980 until 2003, when he retired, Stephen Slifer served as chief U.S. economist for Lehman Brothers in New York City, directing the firm’s U.S. economics group along with being responsible for forecasts and analysis of the U.S. economy. He has written two books on using economic indicators to forecast financial moves and previously served as a senior economist at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve in Washington, D.C. Slifer can be reached at

12 December 5-December 18, 2022
We have to wonder what the Fed really understands SLIFER The Daily Report provides the inside scoop on the Midlands business community! For advertising information, contact Rick Jenkins at (864) 720-1224 or Get your message in front of Columbia’s top CEO’s, executives, business owners and decisionmakers every afternoon. DAILY REPORT Sign up today for the Daily Report email newsletter at

In Focus



Commercial Property Management Companies, Page 19

NEXT ISSUE’S FOCUS: Workforce/Staffing

City and private sector work together to build better in West Columbia PRODUCTIVE PARTNERSHIP

Plots of land near the Congaree River in West Columbia that just a little over a decade ago were vacant patches of dirt have been transformed into vibrant new places for local residents to live, work, shop and play in the city’s growing River District, thanks to the willingness of city officials and a local real estate firm to work together.

It’s a partnership that now is resulting in additional development elsewhere in the city, including the recently announced Langley Pointe project, a $60 million mixed-use development located near Lexington Medical Center off the high-traffic U.S. Highway 378 corridor.

NAI Columbia, the real estate firm that has worked with West Columbia on the

redevelopment project from its beginning, recently closed a $3.75 million deal that will become the residential side of Langley Pointe.

The 38-acre development will feature one, two and three-bedroom apartments, some with direct access to garages. Other amenities will include a clubhouse, co-working space, resort-style swimming pool, community pavilion, outdoor kitchen, pet spa and a pet park.

Lead developers for the Langley Pointe project are Fickling and Co. of Macon, Ga., and Novare Group of Atlanta, with co-sponsor BCDC of Atlanta. Classic Plains is the general contractor for the project, while SGN + A is the architect. The first units are expected to be available by February 2024.

City officials and team members from NAI Columbia say Langley Pointe is a direct result of years of collaboration that resulted

in the transformation of the River District.

“Work on the River District area really dates back to the late ‘90s when the city first made a concrete decision to start acquiring property near the Gervais Street Bridge and create a gateway development to attract people to West Columbia,” said Patrick Chambers of NAI Columbia’s development team. “It’s really been a process that’s developed over the past 25 years.”

Although the project was years in the making, the core work on the River District has taken place in the past four years, building on the city’s 2018 citywide redevelopment plan which focused on making the city a destination instead of simply what officials called a “passthrough from Columbia to Lexington.”

Chambers, along with fellow NAI staffers Ben Kelly and Jack Springs, has worked closely with the city in the redevelopment

of the RIver District, representing the city both in the purchase of prime parcels of land where the district’s key projects are located and in the sale of the parcels to their current owners.

Those parcels include the four-acre Brookland Complex, a mixed-use area that officials credit with kicking off the entire area’s redevelopment.

“We saw that area as being right as a catalyst for both economic growth and development for West Columbia decades ago,” said Brian Carter, West Columbia’s city administrator. “We knew if we could do something right there at the gateway coming across the Gervais Street bridge we could create excitement in that area and use it to grow other areas of the city. We knew that we could turn an area that was essentially a dirt

5-December 18, 2022
West Columbia Mayor Tem Miles said the city took its time and held out for the right kind of development to help the area grow in a positive way as more residents move into the town. (Photo/NAI Columbia)

Quackenbush Architects honored for Rosewood Elementary design

Quackenbush Architects + Planners

received a 2022 American Institute of Architects Columbia Section Honor Award in New Construction for its design of the Rosewood Elementary School Library Addition and Renovation in Richland County School District One.

First constructed in the 1930s, Rosewood Elementary had outgrown its original library. Administrators, staff and students celebrated the old building’s character and charm, and wanted an addition that was respectful of the original structure, according to a news release. However, the functional objective was to provide a new modern, flexible plan infused with innovation to support the learning needs of today’s students.

Quackenbush Architects used the National Park Services’ Guidelines for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings as the foundation of their work.

“We kept in mind the preservation of the historic building’s form, size and scale while working to make the addition compatible in its architectural features and materials,” Project Manager Robyn Rogers said in the news release.

The 4,480-square-foot addition is set back from the main school’s facade and preserves views of the original structure. While the new addition takes cues from the original structure’s exterior materials

and massing, contemporary features such as an expansive window wall and projecting glass lightwell introduces abundant natural lighting and landscaped views into the reading room.

The AIA Columbia jury praised the project as “lovely” and “exemplary,” and appreciated the addition’s “small contemporary moves within a primarily traditional form.” One juror noted that “the undulating glass wall, skylight and abundance of natural light create a very nice children’s library.”

“We worked with Rosewood to ensure that the design preserved the character of their existing school while also providing them with a new and modern daylight-filled library that accommodates the diverse needs of students and teachers,” Rogers says. “Our intention was to make sure the new library was a destination, a place where students could come and be inspired.”

The annual awards, presented at the AIA Columbia 2022 Design Awards Ceremony on Nov. 3, recognize excellence in design,

and honors projects, architects and owners throughout the region who exemplify vision, creativity and design innovation.

“We’re honored to receive this recognition from the American Institute of Architects Columbia,” says Q+ President Doug Quackenbush, AIA LEED, AP. “We’re also proud of our work with the K-12 community to create designs that serve their students and faculty well.”

Quackenbush Architects + Planners is a full-service architecture and planning firm located in Columbia.

Staff Report
The new part of Rosewood Elementary School was designed to honor the historical structure. (Photo/Proivded)

parking lot into a neighborhood.”

West Columbia Mayor Tem Miles said the Brookland Complex enabled the city to add both residential and retail property that would attract new people to the area and allow them to experience already existing downtown businesses that had been local favorites for decades, such as popular Italian restaurant Al’s Upstairs and Cafe Strudel, a popular brunch and dessert spot.

“We’ve had high standards from the beginning for what we wanted in that area – we knew what kind of development we wanted and what we didn’t want,” Miles said.

The Brookland Complex, located in the area directly across from the Congaree River and Riverwalk in West Columbia, combines residential, retail, dining and entertainment opportunities for the community.

It includes the Brookland apartments, the Black Rooster, a casual French-inspired restaurant with a rooftop bar, and businesses such as the Gentlemen’s Quarter Barbershop, Select Physical Therapy and The WRKT, a pilates studio.

Once the Brookland Complex was complete, other projects quickly followed. One of the biggest was the addition of Savage Craft Ale Works, a veteran-owned brewery at 430 Center St. The addition of Savage CRaft was the result of research by NAI’s team and the city in an effort to bring a brewery to the River District because of the positive results other cities saw when they added a brewery to their downtown business mix.

City officials were able to take advantage of one of the neighborhood’s historic buildings through what is known as an adaptive reuse preservation project, enabling the brewery to go into the location of the city’s former city hall and fire station.

The district’s redevelopment also

includes plenty of opportunity for outdoor activities, including Carraway Community Park, an all-inclusive playground that allows safe play for children with a range of physical, mental and other disabilities, and an Interactive Art Park that features a variety of interactive public art pieces created by artists from around South Carolina. The Weekly Meeting Street Artisan Market now takes place every Saturday in the Art Park.

Other residential opportunities are drawing more people to live in the River District. The area also includes Flow, a riverfront townhome and condominium complex, and construction is currently underway on 4West, a mixed-use project developed by Estates & Companies at the corner of Meeting and State streets. When it is completed, 4West will add 52 luxury apartments and 15,000 square feet of commercial space to the area.

The collaboration between the city and NAI is resulting in more than just an increase in visitors.

“It’s amazing to me the number of people I’ve heard from who used to live in West Columbia years ago, moved away and now they’ve been led to come back to the area because of what’s happening here,” Miles said.

Carter said the success of the River District is also paying off because developers and business interests now realize the city is willing to do what has to be done to improve the area for both residents and business owners.

“The development at Langley Pointe is not in our River District but it reflects the things we’ve been doing there,” he said. “Because of the work we’ve done in that district, we now know how to work with people who want to invest in our city, and now when we see an opportunity for further growth in other parts of the city we know how to get there.”

Reach Christina lee Knauss at 803-753-4327.

South Carolina’s unemployment rate increased to 3.3% in October from September’s estimate of 3.2%, according to data released Nov. 18 by the S.C. Department of Unemployment and Workforce.

During October, the estimate of unemployed people in the state increased to 78,578, an increase of 3,174 from September’s estimate but a decrease of 7,945 from October 2021.

The seasonally adjusted monthly survey estimated the number of South Carolinians working decreased to 2,307,838, a significant decrease of 7,984 from the September estimate but an increase of 23,631 from the October 2021 estimate.

The national unemployment rate increased to 3.7% from September’s estimate of 3.5%.

During October, the state saw an

increase of 2,600 nonfarm payroll jobs, according to the DEW report, with gains in trade, transportation and utilities, professional and business services, education and health services and manufacturing. Industries that reported declines were construction, government, financial activities, information, and other services. Leisure and hospitality saw no change in October.

The state’s estimated labor force, which includes people working plus those looking for work, decreased to 2,386,416, a drop of 4,810 people from September’s estimate but still 15,686 more than Sept. 2021.

Richland County’s unemployment rate increased to 3.6% from 3.1%, and Lexington County increased to 3.0% from 2.5%.

The Columbia metropolitan statistical area lost 900 jobs from September to October, while the Charleston/North Charleston area lost added 1,200 and Greenville/ Anderson/Mauldin added 2,700, according to the report.

5-December 18, 2022 15 December 5-December 18, 2022 IN FOCUS: ARCHITECTURE, ENGINEERING AND CONSTRUCTION
Unemployment rate in SC rises in October but remains low


Publix Super Market at Hendrix Crossing

847 Highway 378 West


Developer/owner: Publix Supermarket, Lakeland, Fla.

Architects: Little Diversified, Charlotte

General contractor: McCrory Construction Co. Engineerss: Brandt Engineering, Midlothian, Va. (mechanical, electrical, plumbing); Little Diversified, Charlotte (structural)

Estimated completion date: Fourth quarter 2022

This project comprises interior renovations to an existing Publix store during ongoing operations. Included are updates to the deli kitchen facility as well as new energy-efficient upgrades and overall cosmetic upgrades to the store. The project also includes enclosing the loading dock and concrete slab/ramp modifications.

All Good Books

734 Harden St.

Developer/owner: All Good Books Architects: Dewey Ervin Architectural General contractor: McCrory Construction Engineerss: Felkel & Hastings (mechanical); ETi Engineering (electrical); Swygert and Associates (plumbing)

Estimated completion date: First quarter 2023

This historic restoration of the Hair Building, originally constructed in 1923 and recently occupied by the Thirsty Parrot, will convert the space into a 3,000-square-foot independent bookstore. The stucco has been removed from the façade, and plans call for restoration of the historic brick appearance. New storefronts will be installed that reflect the 1965 look of the building. Roofing repairs will be made; extant windows will be reopened and restored.

Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

945 Sabal St.


Developer/owner: Bull Street Retail

Architects: McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture

General contractor: McCrory Construction Engineers: Devita & Associates, Greenville (mechanical, electrical, plumbing); Davis & Floyd, Greenwood (civil); Fuller Group, Greenville (structural)

Estimated completion date: Shell completion, fourth quarter 2022

The 7,500-square-foot Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant will feature Iron Hill’s signature onsite brewing facility, with seating for approximately 250 throughout a bar area, dining room and outdoor dining space.


567 Spears Creek Road

Developer/owner: QuikTrip, Tulsa

Architects: Tobin, Charlotte

General contractor: McCrory Construction Engineerss: Hoss & Brown, Lenexa, Kan. (mechanical, electrical, plumbing); Freeland & Kauffman Inc., Greenville (civil); Norton & Schmidt, North Kansas City, Mo. (structural)

16 December 5-December 18, 2022 COLUMBIA UNDER CONSTRUCTION
See CUC, Page 17

Estimated completion date: First quarter 2023

This 5,025-square-foot convenience store and gas retailer is the fifth ground-up project McCrory has worked on with national retailer QuikTrip. Located off the intersection of Interstate 20 and Spears Creek Road, this new store features an industrial kitchen, high-end finishes throughout, and a complete landscape package.

Estimated total cost of project: Approximately $5.3 million

Project description: Renovation of existing chemistry labs for use as leading-edge biology laboratories. The 13,800-square-foot project completed on schedule for the fall 2022 academic calendar included constructing four biology laboratories, three prep rooms, a general classroom, an inviting collaborative study area and faculty offices. The finished space (visible to Main Street via new glass curtainwall) is competitive with peer institutions and is instrumental in recruiting high-quality students and faculty.

745 Main Street


Developer/owner: University of South Carolina

Architects: GMK Associates Architectural Division Inc., Columbia General contractor: Construction Dynamics Inc., Columbia Complete Demolition Services LLC, Carrollton, Ga. Project manager: GMK Associates Architectural Division Inc., Columbia Engineers: GMK Associates Engineering Division, Columbia (MEP) Miles Engineering Associates, Blythewood (fire protection engineering) Arrowood + Arrowood PC, Greenville (structural)

F&ME Consultants, Columbia (environmental services)

Estimated completion date: September 2022

Still Hopes Bistro Renovation & Pub Addition

1 Still Hopes Drive

West Columbia

Developer/owner: Still Hopes Episcopal Retirement Community (West Columbia

Architects: GMK Associates Architectural Division, Inc. (Columbia

General contractor: GMK Associates Design-Build Division Inc., Columbia

Project manager: GMK Associates Design-Build Division Inc. Columbia Engineers: The Studio at GMK Interiors, Columbia (interior design) Avalong Designs & Consulting

5-December 18, 2022 17 December 5-December 18, 2022 COLUMBIA UNDER CONSTRUCTION
USC Jones Physical Sciences Center (PSC) – Biology Labs Renovations
Page 17 CUC, from Page 16 (888) 845-6887 | Jonathan Pent Business Developer (803) 726-0477 Protecting your most valuable resources. | On-site rapid COVID-19 testing | On-site biometrics and flu shots Call today to inquire about on-site wellness solutions. 54 Locations in South Carolina for Occ Med Services Doctors Care Employer Health Services | DOT Physicals | Drug Screens | Injury Care | Workers’ Compensation | Occupational Medicine | On-site Medical Centers

projects ranging across the life plan community’s entire continuum of care. Beginning in 2021, GMK was retained to provide design-build construction (including architecture, engineering and interior design services) for the completion of renovations to the existing bistro and new construction of an adjacent pub addition.

Engineers: The Studio at GMK Interiors, Columbia (interior design); GMK Associates Engineering Division, Columbia (MEP); and Mabry Engineering Associates Inc., West Columbia (structural)

Estimated completion date: Spring 2023

Project description: Design-build upfit of a former furniture store for use as general office/admin space and to accommodate onsite educational programs as part of the mission of this community services organization. The upfit covers approximately 30,000 square feet of the building with Phase I, including 30 offices, two training rooms, restrooms and support facilities. An anticipated Phase II would include appropriate educational and recreational space associated with Head Start and Early Head Start program requirements.

SCENT Ambulatory Surgery Center (Center of Excellence)

Park Central / Sunset Boulevard


Developer/owner: SCENT Landholdings Opportunity Fund LLC, Lugoff Architects: Craig A. Otto Architect Inc., Lexington; GMK Associates Architectural Division Inc., Columbia

General contractor: GMK Associates Design-Build Division Inc., Columbia Project manager: GMK Associates Design-Build Division Inc., Columbia Engineers: HB Engineering Inc., Lexington (site civil engineering); The Studio at GMK Interiors, Columbia (interior design); GMK Associates Engineering Division, Columbia (MEP); Fuller Structural, Greenville (structural)

Estimated completion date: Spring 2023

Project description: Design-build construction of a new two-story, 20,000-square-foot ASC that includes first-floor ENT clinic space and second-floor surgery/procedure space. The first floor includes a waiting room/reception area and business office, allergy area, audiology, exam rooms, nurse stations, board room, break room and support spaces. The second floor includes the ASC waiting room/reception area, offices, pre- and post-operatory spaces, nurse station, operating rooms, large storage rooms, and supporting spaces.

The Haven at Palmer Pointe

1135 Carter Street


Developer/owner: Brinshore Development LLC, Northbrook, Ill.

Architects: Martin Riley Associates, Decatur, Ga.

General contractor: M.B. Kahn Construction Co. Inc., Columbia Engineers: Law Engineering Consultants Inc., Snellville, Ga. (structural); RM3 Engineering, Tucker, Ga. (MEP); and Cox & Dinkins Inc., Columbia (landscape and hardscape)

Estimated completion date: June 2024

Estimated total cost of project: $24,900,000

Project description: New construction of 150 unit senior apartment building with accessory use space and offices.

Wateree Community Actions - Administration Office Renovations

201 Columbia Mall Blvd


Developer/owner: Wateree Community Actions Inc., Columbia Architects: GMK Associates Design-Build Division Inc., Columbia General contractor: GMK Associates Design-Build Division Inc., Columbia Project manager: GMK Associates Design-Build Division Inc., Columbia


600 Canalside St., Suite 109, Columbia

Developer/owner: Bierkeller Brewing Co. LLC, Columbia Architects: Sherer & Associates, Columbia

General contractor: Mashburn Construction Co. Inc., Columbia

Estimated completion date: February 2023

Estimated cost: $1.13 million

This project is the upfit of a shell space which will be transformed into a 6,389-square-foot, German-inspired brewery. Once completed, the space will house a kitchen, dining area, outdoor seating space with roll-up windows for exterior service and new restrooms.

18 December 5-December 18, 2022 COLUMBIA UNDER CONSTRUCTION
CUC, from Page 17

Commercial Property Management Companies

Colliers International

1301 Ger vais St., Suite 600 Columbia, SC 29201

Wilson Kibler

1545 Sumter St., Suite 200 Columbia, SC 29201

Arnold Companies

700 Ger vais St., Suite 275 Columbia, SC 29201

Trinity Partners - COLA LLC 1501 Main St., Suite 410 Columbia, SC 29201

Dial Dunlap & Edwards LLC

115 Commercial Drive Columbia, SC 29212


David C. Lockwood 1906 11 134 11,400,000 Flex, health care, hotel, motel, income-producing, industrial, land, multifamily, office, restaurant, retail, warehouse





Ted Pitts, Jeremy Wilson, Sam Gamble 1987 7 92 2,200,000

Agricultural, flex, health care, hotel, motel, income-producing, industrial, land, multifamily, office, restaurant, retail, sports, entertainment, warehouse

Shelly W Little 1994 3 38 425,000 Flex, industrial, land, multifamily, office, restaurant, retail, warehouse

Bruce Harper 2018 3 40 2,000,000

Agricultural, flex, health care, hotel, motel, income-producing, industrial, land, multifamily, office, restaurant, retail, sports, entertainment, warehouse

Michael C. Edwards, Kathy H. Edwards 1985 2 13 330,000 Income-producing, land, restaurant, retail

Agricultural, flex, health care, hotel, motel, income-producing, industrial, land, multifamily, office, restaurant, retail, sports, entertainment, warehouse W.S.

Recognition Events

Jonathan A. Good 2019 2 40 2,000,000

Coffee With

Coping with COVID

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Phone / Website / Email
Official(s) / Year Founded
Ranked by No. of Property Mana gers in the Columbia Area Company
Properties Managed / Sq. Ft. Managed Types of
NAI Columbia 807 Ger vais St., Suite 200 Columbia, SC 29201 803-254-0100
Commercial Real Estate LLC
SC 29073
Because of space constraints, sometimes only the top-ranked companies are published in the print edition. Although ever y effort is made to ensure accuracy, errors sometimes occur. Email additions or corrections to Researched by Business Report staff IT’S TIME TO BINGE BUSINESS Subscribe to SCBIZtv and stay in tune with what’s happening across South Carolina. With nearly 150 videos (and counting), our YouTube channel features a wide variety of businessrelated content. Our playlists have something for everyone. What’s New
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140 White Oak Lane Lexington,
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Turn90 receives Bank of America grant for workforce development

Turn90, a nonprofit that helps men find employment after prison, has been named the 2022 Bank of Amer ica Neighborhood Champion in the Colum bia and Charleston markets.

As part of the program, Turn90 will receive a total of $100,000 in grant support and the chance to take part in virtual lead ership training delivered by experts in the nonprofit sector, according to a news release.

Turn90’s successful pilot site in Charles ton has been helping men at the highest risk of re-arrest find success after prison since 2015. The organization doubled its footprint in 2021 with the opening of a second loca tion in Columbia.

Amy Barch, founder and executive direc tor of Turn90, said in the release that she was extremely grateful for the grants because they come at a time when the organization is growing.

“Turn90 is at a critical inflection point in organizational growth as we expand across the state,” Barch said. “Now more than ever,

we need the community to stand behind our mission of helping men succeed after pris on.”

The Turn90 prison reentry program com bines daily life skills classes, full-time transi tional work in the program’s screen-printing business, wraparound supportive services and career placement in jobs with liv able wages, benefits and opportunities for advancement.

Some of the nonprofit’s past clients have gone on to become staff members.

“The team at Turn90 really wanted to hear about my thoughts and expectations for the

future, and they created a bond among all of us as we shared some of our past mistakes but also our many significant triumphs,” said Aulzue “Blue” Fields, a previous Turn90 pro gram participant and current staff member who provides peer support.

“Bank of America remains committed to addressing barriers to economic oppor tunity and providing resources for skills development and workforce training,” said Kim Wilkerson, president of Bank of Amer ica South Carolina. “The impact of Turn90’s work is significant. Having received this Neighborhood Champion recognition in

two separate markets with two distinct selec tion committees is a powerful testament to their critically important work and the high level of success they have achieved.”

Mark Munn, president of Bank of Amer ica Charleston, praised the nonprofit’s work in that city.

“It’s important that we direct not only cap ital but the necessary resources to help posi tion nonprofits like Turn 90 and their leader ship team for long-term success,” Munn said.

In Charleston, four nonprofits have been selected as Neighborhood Champions since 2019, with the bank investing $200,000 into these local organizations. Previous recipients include South Carolina Associ ation for Community Economic Develop ment, Metanoia, and Lowcountry Local First.

In Columbia, previous recipients of the grants include Columbia Urban League, Senior Resources, and Central South Caro lina Habitat for Humanity.

The invitation-only Neighborhood Champions program is highly competitive, and organizations are selected by a commit tee comprised of community leaders and past honorees.

Sustain SC finds expert to lead sustainability study

Staff Report

Sustain SC has welcomed Pam Martin as a fel low on the organiza tion’s growing team. This new role was created specifically for Martin, who will direct collaborative efforts around sustainable development goals for businesses and organizations.

As fellow, Martin will help lead an Sus tainable Development Goal pilot study launched by Sustain SC and Ernst & Young earlier this year.

“Pam will be a huge asset for our team. I often call her a ‘unicorn’ because she has a very unique skill set as one of the few peo

ple using the SDG framework at the global level and translating it down to the county level and she is right here in South Caro lina,” Ethel Bunch, Sustain SC’s founder and CEO, said in a news release. “She will play an integral role in identifying ways to improve South Carolina’s SDG ranking and providing opportunities for businesses in our state to actively commit to these sus tainability goals at the local level.”

Sustainable Development Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked goals designed to be a blueprint and standard by which all countries and states should measure progress. South Carolina is among the lowest ranked states – 37th out of 50 – in the 2021 United States Sustainable Devel opment Report. The SDG pilot study aims to identify areas where South Carolina is falling behind and the necessary steps

toward improvement, according to the news release. With over 1,200 international companies in the Palmetto State, many of these companies are beginning to use SDGs in their sustainability reporting.

The comprehensive study will be the first of its kind in the nation, the release said, tailored to sustainability goals achievable at the local level. A purpose is to provide businesses with information to leverage, ultimately retaining them in South Caroli na and attracting industries with the same goals in mind.

“I’m so excited to join Sustain SC with this study,” Martin said in the release. “For me, it’s the culmination of what I’ve been doing my entire life. Sustain SC is well posi tioned to create these industry initiatives that will help move our state forward. I’m proud to be a part of this journey.”

Martin brings a diverse background in sustainability and politics to the Sustain SC fellow role. She is a political science professor at Coastal Carolina Universi ty and the HTC Honors College Distin guished Faculty Fellow, developing their new sustainability and coastal resilience major. She also sits on the President’s Council for Sustainability and Coastal Resilience. She is the executive director for the United Nations Regional Centre of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development, which localizes the sustain able development goals in South Carolina.

Sustain SC is an economic development-driven organization that connects the sustainability goals of business in South Carolina with local solutions for the benefit of our economy, environment and people.

Golf tournament raises scholarship money for veterans

Staff Report

The 2022 Midlands Technical Col lege Golf Classic saw more than 120 golfers come together to raise more than $75,000 in scholarship money for veterans, current service members

and their families.

Hosted at the Cobblestone Golf Course in Blythewood on Nov. 7 and presented by Hood Construction, the tournament received financial support from AVAN Tech, Prisma Health, Founders Federal Credit Union, Bank of America Merrill

Lynch, and 33 other sponsors.

“This event is an important effort in building workforce skills in the Midlands and I urge other leaders in business and industry to join me in investing in MTC,” Jim Braun said in a news release. Braun is president and CEO of AVANTech LLC

and chair of the MTC Foundation board. “Supporting great training for our mili tary families helps fuel economic vitality throughout South Carolina.”

“Because of these individuals and

Nicole Scott, right, of Bank of America presents members of the Turn90 team with a grant of $100,000 to support the program. (Photo/Provided) Martin


People in the News development

New at LS3 is Nicholas Day, an assistant construction contracts administrator. A graduate of Clemson University’s School of Architecture, Day was a finalist in the 2018 AIA Columbia design competition for designing a new cultural arts center on North Main Street. Previously, Day was a residential building inspector for Richland County.

David Myers has joined LCK as a senior project manager. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Francis Marion University and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Clemson University and is pursuing a juris doctor at Mitchell Hamline School of Law. In addition, Myers holds professional engineer licenses in South Carolina and North Carolina.

GMK Associates has brought in Stacey O’Neal as a construction project manager in its construction services division. Her 28 years of construction industry experience spans pre-engineered metal building manufacturing systems through large-scale general commercial construction contracting. After attending Francis Marion University, O’Neal began her career in production control for a manufacturer of pre-engineered structures and progressed to senior-level project management roles for multiple general contractors in the Southeast.

At Cason Development Group, Sam Williams is the new director of construction. Williams has 14 years of construction management experience in both high-end residential and commercial construction across South Carolina, mostly in historical renovations, retail, health care and K–12 projects. His projects include Lexington Women’s Care Sandhills, schools in Lexington School District One, the Kiawah River Swim Club and Outfitter Shop, and the renovation of a historic 1840s warehouse for the Charleston Visitor Center. A Clemson University graduate, Williams has a degree in business management.


Drew Huckeba, Safe Federal Credit Union’s senior vice president and chief lending officer, has received the Credit

Union National Association’s Rising Star Award. Since joining Safe more than a decade ago, Huckeba has improved the credit union’s lending program by streamlining application process, automating the decision process, adding loan products and more. His most recent work to automate applications and loan pre-approvals has increased the credit union’s loan approval ratio by nearly 40% in the last 18 months.

AgFirst Farm Credit Bank’s new chief human resources officer is Darrick Paul. Most recently, he worked as chief people officer at the Medical University of South Carolina Health in Charleston. He also spent a decade in HR leadership at Denver’s Catholic Health Initiatives. Paul earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia and a dual master’s degree in business administration and HR and health care administration from American Intercontinental University. He also holds several certifications from professional industry groups.


Logan Howard has joined Capitol Consultants. In her new role, Howard is involved in all aspects of government affairs and lobbying functions as well as assisting management clients with messaging, media and branding. After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communications in public relations at the University of South Carolina, Howard was a public relations apprentice at a New York financial communications agency. She also has worked for the South Carolina Attorney General’s Office and for the Columbia Mayor’s Office.


Grace Babcock has joined Richardson Thomas. Her focus is personal injury, including motor vehicle crashes, serious injuries, wrongful death and class actions. Babcock first came to Richardson Thomas as a law clerk and also clerked at two other Columbia law firms. She graduated magna cum laude from North Carolina State University with a degree in sociology and cum laude from

the University of South Carolina School of Law, where she was staff development editor for the ABA Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Journal and earned a CALI Award in trial advocacy.

The Leadership Council on Legal Diversity has named Baker Donelson a Compass Award winner. The award recognizes law firms and corporations that show a strong commitment to building more diverse organizations and a more inclusive legal profession. Baker Donelson has been a council member since the organization’s inception in 2009 and has participated in both the Fellows and Pathfinders programs since their launch.

Evan M. Gessner has joined Collins & Lacy’s Columbia office as special counsel in the retail and hospitality practice group. Prior to joining Collins & Lacy, Gessner served in a number of litigation roles in both state and federal trial and appellate courts. In addition, he worked for a several years as assistant general counsel at the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. Gessner is a graduate of the University of South Carolina School of Law. He also has been admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Alexandra “Alex” C. Glunt is now practicing law at Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, where she represents lenders and banks in connection with consumer and commercial loan disputes. Glunt received her bachelor’s degree from Flagler College and her juris doctor, magna cum laude, from the University of South Carolina School of Law. While in law school, Glunt served as student works editor for the South Carolina Law Review and was president of the Labor & Employment Law Society.

The Supreme Court of South Carolina has appointed Lisle Traywick, an attorney at Robinson Gray, to the Commission on Continuing Legal Education and Specialization. Traywick focuses his practice primarily on appellate advocacy and civil litigation. He also teaches election law at the University of South Carolina School of Law. A graduate of Leadership Columbia, he serves in leadership roles in numerous professional organizations and has been recognized by the court for his commitment to pro bono service. Traywick graduated cum laude from Wofford College and earned his juris doctor from the University of South Car-

olina School of Law, where he was editorin-chief of the South Carolina Law Review. Before joining Robinson Gray, he clerked for H. Bruce Williams at the South Carolina Court of Appeals and David C. Norton at the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina.


Ashley M. Dusenbury has been named senior manager, corporate communications, at Aflac. Dusenbury is an accredited public relations strategist with more than 28 years of experience in the television, advertising agency and nonprofit sectors.


Playsafe has named Brandy Singleton its executive director. Singleton manages day-to-day operations and leads comprehensive marketing and fund development strategies. Previously, she spent 11 years with United Way of Anderson County, where her roles included vice president of community impact and state director of the South Carolina Disaster Corps. She holds an executive certificate for completing The Nonprofit Financial Stewardship Program at John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.


Margaret-Ann Ashburn, a broker with Carter Realtors, has received the Top Agent Award from Homesnap. Each year the company evaluates the performance of more than one million Homesnap Pro agents and selects the top 15 percent based on productivity and customer satisfaction. This is the second year Ashburn has been selected. Ashburn and her husband, Tom, are life members of the Central Carolina Realtors Association’s Million Dollar Club and Circle of Excellence and hold such professional designations as Accredited Buyer Specialist, Accredited Seller Specialist and Senior Real Estate Specialist.

Susan Longshore-Stover is now Home Advantage Realty’s director of builder services, a new position. She has more than 27 years of experience in new home construction sales and marketing, She is active in local and national professional organizations.

stover 21 December 5-December 18, 2022
Myers O’Neal Williams Huckeba Paul Howard Babcock Gessner Traywick Dusenbury Ashburn Long-shore

SAFE earns award for excellence in lending at California conference

CUNA Lending Council presented SAFE Federal Credit Union with an Excellence in Lending Award at its recent conference in San Diego, Calif.

Steve Heinemann, SAFE’s assistant vice president of mortgage services, and his team were recognized for implementing SAFE’s newly improved mortgage lending strategy.

Heinemann’s entry, titled SAFE’s Forward Vision to Mortgage Lending, underlined enhancements including restructuring the credit union’s mortgage application process, launching advanced training programs and establishing steps to ensure superior member experiences.

The credit union’s new strategy increased its mortgage loan approvals by 7% and boosted its loan portfolio by 19% during the first eight months of 2022, according to a news release. These results helped rank

community partners, the MTC Foundation will be able to provide scholarships to some of our nation’s finest,” Nancy McKinney, MTC Foundation CEO, said in the news release. “I would like to thank our presenting sponsor, Hood Construction, and everyone who donated their time, talent and treasure to ensuring MTC remains a top educational choice for those who have served in our nation’s armed forces and their families.”

“MTC is one of the few Purple Heart Colleges and the only VetSuccess on Campus site in South Carolina,” MTC Presi-

SAFE among the top credit unions in mortgage loan origination.

“SAFE Federal Credit Union is delighted to recognize Steve Heinemann and our mortgage professionals for their outstanding lending accomplishments,” said President and CEO Michael Baker in the news release. “Their commitment to improvement has helped SAFE deliver a mortgage experience for our members that’s better than ever.”

SAFE was among five credit unions across the nation that were awarded the Excellence in Lending Award from the Credit Union National Association, CUNA. All award recipients will be honored for their lending achievements in a future issue of Credit Union Magazine.

SAFE Federal Credit Union, founded in 1955, is one of the largest financial institutions based in South Carolina.

dent Ronald L. Rhames said in the news release. “The Golf Classic is additional evidence of our commitment to serving those who served. And we’ve seen the difference it makes in one’s life firsthand. Recipients of last year’s scholarships are pursuing opportunities in welding, sterile processing, information technology and other careers.”

Each year, scholarships from the Golf Classic help service members and their families become work ready through MTC’s QuickJobs program. The program gives students the training they need to succeed in high-demand jobs over the next decade.

22 December 5-December 18, 2022
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MIDLAND TECH GOLF, from Page 20 MTC Foundation Chairman Jim Braun with MTC President Dr. Rhames and SC National Guard Adjutant General, Major General Van McCarty. (Photo/Provided) Steve Heinemann and his team developed a lending strategy that increased approvals and boosted the credit union’s loan portfolio. (Photo/Provided)
Take the first step today toward building equity in your brand, promoting your excellence and offering your audience more reasons to trust you. Contact EVG, and a member of EVG’s content licensing team will be happy to answer your questions and get you started. You’ve Earned it. EnVertitas Group: creative licensing solutions for professionals that earn accolades they deserve B Enveritas is the exclusive reprints and logo licensing partner for Columbia Regional Business Report JULIE ANN AVIN City of birth: B.S. in business administration, Charleston Southern University; M.Ed. in Counseling, Clemson University dignity and respect. Here’s something others may not know about me: grew up in the country. can drive tractor, milk cow, and play classical piano. Anything JRR Tolkien. My favorite is “The Hobbit.” She still crafts cookies, cupcakes, croissants and other baked delicacies for online orders for the Columbia shop, but inflation and the labor shortage haven’t been the only current affairs affect her operations. As the Russian military began to tear through Ukraine February, sparking what American think tank the Atlantic Council calls the biggest refugee crisis since World War II, ing rooms. Since then, concerned observers have hung yellow-andblue flags solidarity, boycotted Russian vodka and sent “Our petit fours — we call them party fours — are one our top selling items, and since was able to incorporate the Ukrainian national flower, sunflower, and hearts that are half yellow, half blue, knew it would appeal to many people who wanted to help in some way,” she told SC Biz News. The French Culinary Institute-trained baker modeled the drive after fundraiser she had launched for regular customer who had lost her home to flooding. Following the first days the invasion, she contacted World Central Kitchen, an emergency food relief nonprofit founded by José Andrés, the dean at the New York Citylinary school in New York City and went to demonstration he put on,” she said. “He great chef with big heart.” Ukraine mission, the nonprofit has served 16.4 million meals to Ukrainians across eight countries and more “This is the reality here,” Nate Mook, World Central Kitchen employee said in statement after the attack. “Cooking heroic act of bravery.” The Yaposhka kitchen team — several of the thousands of chefs, bakers and cooks on the ground Ukraine with World Central Kitchen — was up and running again in new loca tion within two days, according to the organization. At home in South Carolina, Nobles shared how crafting the petit fours was bittersweet and meditative experience. really had more somber experience making these, because the whole time was decorating them, all could Columbia baker helps stock Ukrainian kitchens Columbia bakery Silver Spoon Bake Shop offered special petit fours to MOLLY HULSEY A now Promote it!



Considerations before developing beyond city limits

We often hear that all of the easy sites are gone. As a result, residential development in the Carolinas and Georgia is stretching beyond the typical suburbs into more rural areas. The math is simple: there is a scarcity of land and the land that is available has appreciated, so developers must expand their reach. This trend is playing out across the country but is particularly acute in the Southeast, which was already experiencing a development boom before the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated it.

Residential developments are extending well beyond Greenville, Raleigh and Atlanta. In some of those places, locals would have been shocked to see a new subdivision just a few years ago, let alone townhomes or apartments. But these developments can create new opportunities for local residents, businesses and governments. As residential growth occurs, the tax base grows and shopping centers, offices and other commercial growth will eventually follow.

Despite the opportunities they create, these projects often encounter resistance, including from people who like living in a rural area and want to keep it that way. Fortunately, developers can take proactive steps to address resistance and reduce locals’ concerns.

To start, it is essential to understand the local requirements of an area. Zoning is an inherently local process. Best practices in one part of South Carolina may not apply in another part of the state, let alone in North Carolina or Georgia. That said, the development process in more rural areas may offer smoother and more efficient processes than cities, which often have more restrictions. No matter where you plan to build, seeking guidance from attorneys, engineers and other consultants with local experience is especially valuable.

In researching the local area, another useful step is to review the jurisdiction’s long-term plans for development, which typically spell out encouraged and discouraged uses. Those plans can be a great way to gain early insight into how a project may be received by both the government and community before expending too many resources on engineering plans.

Developers should also be proactive with community outreach to address concerns and allay fears. The more they do on the front end — before they walk into the council chambers for a public hearing — the better. This is especially important as more suburban jurisdictions are requiring community meetings as part of their entitlement process, including in metro Atlanta. There can be challenges and risks with proactive outreach, but it is important for developers to share their story and the benefits of their project. Early lines of communication can lead to better outcomes than when residents are surprised to see a sign pop up on their street about a hearing in a few days.

One common concession developers should be prepared to consider is creating buffers along the project boundaries to soften the impact on neighbors who have been there for a long time. Buffering and screening can help preserve some residents’ preferred way of life while also creating features that new residents can enjoy.

Outreach to local officials and stakeholders is also critical. Developers should meet with municipal staff in advance and introduce themselves and their project to local officials and decision makers. As part of those conversations, developers should be ready for questions about nonresidential uses such as retail and other

elements they’re not ready to develop because the density may not be there to support it. They should also be aware of the tug and pull between homeowners who want larger lots (and home values) and elected officials seeking more affordable housing solutions, which often result in smaller lots and increased density.

In addition, developers should be prepared to talk to local officials about the infrastructure needed to support the growth their projects will catalyze. While roads and utilities are a common focus, we’ve even had clients dedicate land from their project for a school to absorb the growth they would bring. Obviously, not every project can support a school, but it’s an example of how developers can get creative.

A proactive step developers can consider taking to help with their outreach to the community and government officials is budgeting for the cost of a traffic study. In some cases, those are required for subdivisions. Even when they are not though, they can be a useful tool to allay concerns or identify mitigation measures that might provide a level of comfort for residents who have concerns about traf-

fic. Those measures can also be worked into the budget.

To boil it all down, developers who are bringing projects beyond the ‘burbs and into more rural areas can smooth out that process and the accompanying unknowns through a proactive approach to engaging with the community and anticipating opposition. As noted above, the process can be made easier through partnerships with professionals who know the community well and who can guide the process.

Mike Pitts, Collier Marsh and Shaun Adams are attorneys in Parker Poe’s Development Services Industry Team, which helps clients across the Southeast navigate the entire life cycle of real estate projects. Pitts is in Greenville, and can be reached at Marsh is in Raleigh, and can be reached at Adams is in Atlanta, and can be reached at

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