‘Work in progress’ Florence city leaders gearing up for next phase in downtown development

New project in Florence marks start of 10-year plan

FLORENCE, S.C. (WMBF) - While Downtown Florence has grown over the last decade, leaders are already getting ready for the next steps in expansion.

Around the area, buildings are going up and roads are being redone.

These projects are all apart of the city’s ten-year comprehensive plan.

Downtown has grown into a hub for small businesses and entertainment, but there’s still work to be done.

“As it has developed and more and more developers want to come to the area, you kind of feel that ripple effect from what we call the historic downtown,” said Clint Moore, Assistant City Manager.

Moore is in charge of some of the projects already taking shape.

Right now a flat empty lot sits across from the Florence City Center, the site of Project Urban Square.

“It will have the city’s new parking deck, we are working with a private developer who will be developing an apartment complex, a 30,000 square foot office building, and a hotel and small conference space,” said Moore.

Next door to the Urban Square location, a streetscape project is underway on West Evans Street.

Moore said these two projects go hand-in-hand and added that as downtown grows, access to it must do the same.

“This streetscape will have a bicycle path, sidewalks, and it’s also a beautification project bringing more landscaping into downtown,” he said.

The expansion continues down Irby Street, where the Belmont Apartment Complex is already coming alive within walking distance of Downtown Florence.

Moore’s goal over the next ten years is to have more people calling downtown home.

“Getting people in downtown, using these services, restaurants, retail shops, everything daily along with those within the city is very important to creating a vibrant downtown,” he said.

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