The sight of the looming brutalist architecture of the Daniel Building might be the sign that you’re almost to work as you make your way into downtown Greenville for your morning commute.
Or, the Hughes Library and Upcountry History Museum signify that you’ve made it as you drive southeast on Pete Hollis Boulevard into the midsized metro.
There are a few key routes into the city too, and now greenville’s city and county governments are applicable what a couple of those gateways and how they the area.
Greenville roots:Daniel building was once tall in the Carolinas
The I-385 gateway into downtown Greenville, a local ‘Bermuda Triangle’
If you’re going to downtown Greenville from Columbia or Charleston, or just nearby from the Golden Strip or Laurens, you’re likely coming via Interstate 385.
Greenville residents, business owners and officials are meeting with consultants to discuss a new vision for this entryway through a project called the Greenville Gateway.
This gateway near Bon Secours Wellness Arena includes the 1.83-acre former Memorial Auditorium site, which Mayor Knox White once called the “Bermuda Triangle of downtown development” after plans to develop the key parcel failed to materialize despite years of effort.
Dive deeper:New life imagine for the ‘Bermuda Triangle’ of downtown Greenville, the I-385 gateway
The study area the arena and the Pettigru Historic District and East North Street, which serves as a key corridor for the city.
Despite such connectivity, the area has been greatly overlooked and underdeveloped compared to the rest of downtown.
A series of intensive planning sessions kickstarted the initiative. The sessions are to spark a years-long process to incorporate the community’s goals into a plan that will create “a unified vision for public and private investments,” according to the project website at greenvillegateway.com.
Augusta Road gateway
If you live in Belton, Honea Path or Greenwood, you might take the blighted Augusta Road corridor to get to downtown Greenville.
As Greenville develops and expands, local leaders would like to see the area where Augusta Road and Interstate 85 cross as a gateway — and the Greenville County planning department is working on a plan.
More:Greenville wants to transform Augusta Road with I-85 beautification, affordable housing
The goal is to remove blight, add affordable housing and design an intentional gateway into the city of Greenville and the nearby South Carolina Technology and Aviation Center.
The Augusta Road corridor is south of the Pleasant Valley neighborhood and north of the Belle Meade neighborhood and currently is home to 73 businesses with 785 employees, according to data from the county planning department.
Pointsett Highway and Pete Hollis Boulevard
If you’re going to the city from Asheville, North Carolina, or much of northern Greenville County, Travelers Rest and Sans Souci, you most likely travel down Poinsett Highway, which is US 276, or Pete Hollis Boulevard, which is State 183, to get downtown. That’s where you’re greeted by a giant mural.
The mural on the eight-story Canvas tower features retired Greenville County educator Pearlie Harris, who helped integrate Greenville County Schools. It was created in honor of the 50th anniversary of Greenville schools’ desegregation in 2020.
The mural was started and completed by Australian artist and photographer Guido van Helten after a series of articles published by The Greenville News helped inspire the work.
Ask Angelia:Who painted, the mural on former BB&T building in downtown Greenville?
It was 2017 when a Charleston-based development company, The Beach Co., announced a plan to redevelop the old eight-story BB&T office building at 301 College Street as part of its Canvas project. A dilemma the company faced was finding a way to make that 1970s-era building look modern and interesting.
The solution proposed by the developer was creating something iconic that would tie the structure to nearby Heritage Green, the city’s urban arts and culture campus, and to downtown Greenville — and thus came the mural.
The public art functions as a gateway for downtown though it was not deliberately designed to be a gateway by the city.
NorthPointe development at Wade Hampton Boulevard
If you’re a resident of Greer, Taylors or the Eastside — or if you’re a visitor from Spartanburg who’s not traveling on I-85 — the NorthPointe development on Wade Hampton Boulevard signals entry into Greenville’s downtown where Church Street splits from Wade Hampton , which is US 29, north of Stone Avenue.
From 2019:Vision for a remade Wade Hampton Boulevard comes into view with public hearing scheduled
According to the city of Greenville’s strategic plan for the area, Wade Hampton Boulevard serves as one of Greenville’s “iconic gateway corridors.”
“Built as the ‘Super Highway’ to connect Greenville with Spartanburg, Wade Hampton Boulevard was South Carolina’s first multi-lane highway and quickly garnered the automobile oriented development that would come to characterize these corridors across the United States,” the plan reads.
Bob Jones University is located outside of downtown on Wade Hampton Boulevard. Travelers get a glimpse of the downtown Greenville skyline as they move to the NorthPointe development, the mixed-use development that includes a Harris Teeter grocery store.
See the full Wade Hampton Boulevard Strategic Plan created in February 2019 here.
I-185 and Church Street
If you go to downtown Greenville from the western Upstate or Atlanta, you might take Interstate 185, which is not a toll road north of I-85 unlike its Southern Connector portion between I-85 and I-385.
North of I-85, I-185 turns into Mills Avenue and then Church Street, and the towering glass of the new Greenville County Square building under construction at the hill on University Ridge greets drivers as they enter the downtown area.
Dive deeper:Big Greenville County Square redevelopment builds with ‘vibe and feel coming to life’
The development, one of the largest in Greenville history valued at $1 billion, is transforming 37½ acres of county government’s headquarters along University Ridge into high-end home, retail and office towers, one of which will be the new hub for Greenville County government administration .
The development is catty-corner to the South View Apartments with the Biscuit Head restaurant on the ground floor.
Its construction is emblematic of the growth that’s happening throughout town.
– Macon Atkinson and Angelia Davis contributed to this story.
Genna Contino covers Greenville County and housing for The Greenville News. Contact Genna at email@example.com or on Twitter @GennaContino. Subscribe to The Greenville News at greenvillenews.com/subscribe.