Wednesday, June 19 2013 12:40 PM EDT2013-06-19 16:40:28 GMT
Four men are now in custody in connection with three home robbery incidents in Montgomery. All four men, ranging in age from 27-years-old to 35-years-old have been charged with multiple felonies in connectionMore >>
Four men are now in custody in connection with three home robbery incidents in Montgomery.
All four men, ranging in age from 27-years-old to 35-years-old have been charged with multiple felonies in connection with these incidents.More >>
The Taliban have claimed responsibility for an attack in Afghanistan that killed four U.S. troops just hours after the insurgent group announced it would hold talks with the Americans on finding a political solution...More >>
Afghanistan's president said Wednesday he will not pursue peace talks with the Taliban unless the United States steps out of the negotiations, while also insisting the militant group stop its violent attacks on the...More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 11:35 AM EDT2013-06-19 15:35:34 GMT
The Alabama Department of Public Safety has issued a Missing Child Media Alert after a 2-month-old baby was allegedly taken by a 14-year-old girl early Monday morning from Birmingham. Police say 2-month-oldMore >>
Birmingham Police have confirmed that missing infant De'Anthony Kelly and his abductor, Dor'Sayde Gathright were located in Dallas, Texas Tuesday night, and were taken into custody without incident. More >>
President Barack Obama's 26-hour whirlwind visit to Berlin caps three days of international summitry for the president, and marks his return to a place where he once summoned a throng of 200,000 to share his...More >>
Trying to tamp down concerns about government over-reach, President Barack Obama on Wednesday defended U.S. Internet and phone surveillance programs as narrowly targeted efforts that have saved lives and thwarted at least 50...More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 8:49 AM EDT2013-06-19 12:49:43 GMT
A new study ranks Alabama 19th among in the states in the amount of federal funding that goes into the state government's general revenue. The study by the Tax Foundation says federal funding accountsMore >>
A new study ranks Alabama 19th among in the states in the amount of federal funding that goes into the state government's general revenue. More >>
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Greenville, South Carolina. Population? 60,000, tucked away at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in what's known around here as the Upstate.
But locals will tell you their crown jewel is much closer to the ground. Main Street which is the 'main' attraction for Tonya Toran.
"Oh, this is a big deal to us because it's a place where the entire family can come," said Toran who moved to Greenville from Baltimore, Maryland.
A big deal that started 30 years ago, a time business owner Deb Ayers remembers all too well.
"It had become a rather ugly downtown. We were all trying to be contemporary," said Ayers recalling downtown having that '70s look.
For Greenville it came down to this; let downtown go forever or do something. City leaders chose the latter and this is the result of vision, a lot of money and a commitment that shows no sign of wavering.
"We took risks," said the city's Economic Development Director Nancy Whitworth.
Overlooking the city from atop of city hall, Whitworth says it was the so-called public-private partnership that got it going, a fuzzy beaucratic sounding phrase that simply encourages private investors to take a chance on downtown once public tax dollars are committed.
"The public sector is the spark plug, the private sector is really the engine," said Whitworth.
And it's been full steam ever since. Hundreds of millions of dollars in federal grants, downtown property taxes and some city money, paved the way for what it now a 3-mile stretch of beautiful trees, period lighting, specialty shops, restaurants and Greenville's new minor league baseball stadium. Montgomery hopes to look something like this down the road.
"We're thought of as downtown as everybody's neighborhood," said Whitworth.
Not necessarily. We ran into Rufus Salters.
"They need to explore a little movie theatre and maybe arena football," said Salters.
Not far from this interview with Salters we did find a couple of empty buildings, clearly indicating that even the best laid plans can lose focus.
"You can't always predict what the market will do. Some things will work, some things will not. You step back and regroup," Whitworth said.
In fact, for about 10 years nothing really moved in downtown Greenville, South Carolina, after the initial burst of activity yet there was no turning back.
"One thing we learned is having a lot of patience," said Whitworth.
And perseverance. Even when the sun goes down, people are still downtown, and not one person expressed any concerns about personal safety or crime.
An outdoor movie, 'War of the Worlds,' brought out Greenville native Brandy Caldwell by the Reedy River and hundreds more like her.
"I love this community because it's thriving culturally," said Caldwell, who recently moved to New York City to pursue an acting career.
The story of Greenville's renaissance is not a make-believe tale but a real-life movie of a town that's apparently stuck gold with a new downtown district, 30 years in the making.
Back in Montgomery city and economic development leaders say it will probably take a generation to fully revamped the downtown district. The main reason is downtown Montgomery is much more widespread than Greenville's downtown district.
In part 2 of WSFA 12 News reporter Bryan Henry's series, we'll look at not only what Montgomery has accomplished so far but why the renovation never got off the ground years ago.