Mayor Tem Miles talks about West Columbia progress

The City of West Columbia is in the middle of a renaissance in the areas of residential, commercial building, public spaces and the hospitality industry.

Feature photo is state Sen. Nikki Setzler and Tem Miles in front of new signs promoting West Columbia attractions and sites.  

West Columbia Mayor Tem Miles said he is encouraged to see so much going on.

“I am inspired by the growth and development that we have seen in West Columbia,” said Miles. He then listed some of the residential projects in the works.

Flow Riverfront Townhomes.

“We have many new housing options under construction including the Still Water Development, with 200 townhome units, off of Dreher Road; the Pine Crest Subdivision, which will be almost 200 single-family residential units, behind the Carolina Pottery Plaza on Augusta Road; a new apartment complex targeting the health care worker industry, behind Lexington Medical Center; the completion of phase two of the FLOW Condominiums, along the river overlooking the Gervais Street Bridge; as well as the St. Ann’s Alley project, a single-family home development in the heart of the River District.”

In addition to the residential growth, there is lots of commercial activity.   “New businesses are also opening,” said Miles. He noted:

  • Savage Craft Ale Works, on Center Street in the historic City Hall building, adjacent to the Interactive Art Park,
  • ReMax Southern Collection, moving into the newly renovated second-story historical space on State Street,
  • The two-story office building on Meeting Street that is now home to D’Alberto & Graham Attorneys and Advisors.

“I am excited to see the redevelopment and revitalization plans coming to life,” said Miles

While so much has happened, Miles said he is looking to the future, partly because the city is investing in infrastructure that will facilitate expansion.

New homes in St. Ann’s Alley.

“I look forward to seeing the continued momentum of our city,” said Miles, “with the opening of the Savage Craft Ale Works brewery, in the heart of the River District, which will spur further growth and development in that area. Also, we are expanding our utility offerings from I-26 West towards I-20 on Sunset Boulevard, which is stimulating significant growth in that area.”

While new businesses have been a large part of the growth, Miles said the addition of public spaces has also played a part.

“The world-class Carraway Park at the Riverwalk has attracted visitors from across the region,” said Miles. “It has exceeded expectations in providing an exceptional and safe place for all children to play as well as created an added destination in West Columbia for families to plan a day around. The Interactive Art Park has not only created a beautiful place to interact with local art but has shaped a sense of place for local vendors and shoppers to come every Saturday morning to mingle at the Meeting Street Artisan Market in the pavilion.”

Much of the recent development has been in The River District, but other areas of the city are expanding, too.

“Our focus continues to be developing our business corridors,” said Miles, “such as the River District, Triangle City, Augusta Road, and Sunset Boulevard. The Sunset Boulevard Corridor, between I-20 and I-26, has seen and will continue to see significant growth in the coming months with the Towne Place Suites coming online, across from Lexington Medical Center, as well as the recently opened Dunkin’ and soon to open Chipotle. There are also two new restaurant spaces near completion next to the Starbucks at I-26, at 2515 Sunset Boulevard.”

Remax Southern Collections on State Street.

In the year 2020, all of West Columbia has faced unique challenges because of the coronavirus. Miles said the people of the city have risen to the occasion.

“West Columbians have always been resilient,” Miles said. “We are hard-working and persevering. Throughout the pandemic, we continue to see growth in our business and residential communities. Our businesses, churches, organizations, and residents work together as a community to help those in need. West Columbia is always committed to supporting new and locally owned businesses while continuing to provide resources to our community.”

Miles credits the people who work for the City of West Columbia for the continuing progress.

“I have been amazed by the flexibility of our city staff and leadership,” Miles said,  “to continue meeting the needs of our city while navigating all the changes that 2020 continues to bring.”