Ten at the Top
Upstate News

November 29, 2010 - Vol 1, Issue 10
Dec. 1 - Vision & Values Committee Meeting
10:00-11:30 a.m. - University Center

Dec. 7 - TATT Executive Committee Meeting
12:00-2:00 p.m. - Village at Pelham

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Dean Hybl
Executive Director
Ten at the Top
Email: dhybl@tenatthetop.org
Phone: 864.283.2315

Jacquelyn Fehler
Program Manager
Ten at the Top
Email: jfehler@tenatthetop.org
Phone: 864.283.2313

TATT Community ForumTen at the Top has completed its latest community outreach activity during which 730 Upstate residents, community leaders, business leaders and elected officials participated in one of 12 Community Forums across the Upstate. Participants provided input on "What Matters Most" to them as part of the year-long initiative by TATT to create a Shared Upstate Growth Vision.  At least one forum was held in each of the Upstate's ten counties, with two forums being held in the more populous counties of Greenville and Spartanburg.

Since the beginning of the TATT visioning effort, nearly 9,000 residents across the Upstate have provided input through questionnaires, visioning exercises, community meetings and outreach presentations.

"The community forums provided a great chance to hear first hand from residents across the region as to what they value about living in the Upstate and what they see as being important as we continue to grow," said Dean Hybl, Executive Director of Ten at the Top. "In each county we met many people who are passionate about where they live and want to ensure that we continue to maintain and enhance the quality of life for all residents."

All of the input received during the Community Forums, as well as the Regional Vision Summit that involved more than 400 participants on September 28th, is available for review on the Ten at the Top web site.

Anyone who was unable to attend one of the community forums but still would like to provide input about what matters to them as we look to the future may do so by becoming one of the "Voices of the Upstate".

All community input will be used over the next several months by the Ten at the Top Vision & Values committee as they develop the final Shared Upstate Growth Vision.

Current plans call for the Shared Upstate Growth Vision to be unveiled during a Regional Forum and Workshop on April 27, 2010 at the Carolina First Center. As is the case with all Ten at the Top events, the unveiling and workshop will be free and open to the public. Registration will begin in March 2011.

Gaffney Visitors CenterIllustrating that iconic buildings, regardless of their age, can still serve important community functions, the City of Gaffney recently opened their new Visitors Center and Art Gallery in the former Post Office Building on North Granard Street.

Originally completed in 1913, the building served as the Gaffney Post Office until 1991.

In recent years the structure had fallen in disrepair, but instead of suffering the fate of many older buildings that have been demolished to make way for more modern facilities, the City of Gaffney decided to renovate the building and use it for important community functions.

The building now serves as the Visitors Center for the City of Gaffney and also includes community meeting space. 

It also will provide local artists with a great place to display their talents as the facility includes an art gallery and two arts studios. The facility will serve as home to the Cherokee County Alliance of Visual Artists and be as a great place for budding artists to hone their craft as classes will be available in everything from sculpting, painting and pottery to cartooning and drawing and other artistic vocations.

Hours of operation for the new facility are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Pickens Vision 2025Three years after unveiling the Pickens County Vision Plan, Pickens County Vision 2025 is making great strides toward meeting many of the 89 objectives developed in their initial plan.

For more details on what has been accomplished so far, check out the Pickens Vision 2025 web site.

Illustrating the continued movement along the project areas, Pickens Vision 2025 and local partners recently received a $5,000 Appalachian Gateway Communities Initiative: Natural & Cultural Heritage Tourism Development grant. This grant calls for a two-day workshop in the county to discuss how to create a cultural tourism strategy that capitalizes on the natural resources of the county as well as the cultural assets. The strategy will also look at the role of the arts in revitalizing downtown Pickens.

The grant is a matching grant that includes local contributions of both cash and in-kind services. The funders of the grant include: The Appalachian Regional Commission, The National Endowment for the Arts, The Conservation Fund and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The workshop will take place in Pickens County during the first quarter of 2011.


Upstate timberA study recently conducted by a pair of Clemson University professors identified the loss of move than 700,000 acres of forest cover in the 10-county region between 1992 and 2010.

Dr. Barry Nocks and Professor Stephen Sperry used satellite and aerial photography over the 18-year period to conduct the study.

"We were very surprised at this finding," Sperry said. "We knew there had been some loss of forest cover in the region, but we never imagined it was of this magnitude. For a region that prides itself on being green, this is a disturbing trend."

The study also evaluated urban density trends in the Upstate. Density measures the number of people living in urbanized areas on a per square mile basis.

In 1992, the density in the Upstate was 2,091 people per urban square mile. That figure declined to 1,515 people in 2000 and 1,201 people per urban square mile in 2010.

"This is a clear indicator of sprawl," Dr. Nocks said. "People and development are spreading out across most of the region rather than being concentrated around the urban centers.. Sprawling development and increased pasture land were the main reasons our region has lost so much of its forest cover."

Click here to read more results from the study.

TATT E-Newsletter

This will be the final Ten at the Top e-newsletter for 2010 as beginning in January the e-newsletter will be distributed on the first Monday of every month, instead of the current schedule of the final Monday of each month.

Currently, the TATT e-newsletter is distributed to more than 6,300 residents across the Upstate.

Any city, county, business or organization with news, special recognition or events they wish to promote on a regional scale through the TATT e-newsletter are asked to submit them by the final Thursday of each month to Dean Hybl (dhybl@tenatthetop.org).

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