The 2014 Savannah Critical Issues Forum, titled Creating the Best Downtowns in America: A Conversation with Mayor Knox White was held October 8 at Savannah Technical College. This year’s Forum was presented in partnership with the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce and the Savannah Economic Development Authority.
For the past 18 years, Mayor White of Greenville, S.C. has had the goal of making Greenville “the most beautiful and livable city in America.” Greenville’s transformation from a textile manufacturing economy to a highly diversified and advanced manufacturing hub is a remarkable success story. For several decades Greenville has focused on downtown renewal and development, and the result is a vibrant city core bustling with street life, restaurants, retail, and residential communities.
Mayor White told the story of how the area economy was rebuilt and developed—paralleled and supported by the reclamation and development of a once-abandoned downtown river—and how both have contributed to the “best downtown in America.”