Thursday, February 14, 2019

Main Street South Carolina Training Looks at “Pilates of Place”

By Jenny Boulware, Main Street SC Manager

What do Pilates and downtown commercial districts have in common? 

Pilates is a form of physical fitness that emphasizes strength, flexibility and core conditioning. Downtowns are similar because they are the physical hearts of our communities — they are iconic and symbolic cores that require continual, purposeful care. 

Recognizing the importance of downtown cores, cities of all sizes are implementing plans to revitalize and continually strengthen them. This is what Irene Dumas Tyson, BOUDREAUX Associate and Director of Planning, calls “Pilates of Place.” One such “Pilates of Place” can be found in downtown Columbia along Sumter and Taylor streets. 

Photo credit: BOUDREAUX
At Main Street South Carolina’s recent First Quarter training session, participants visited BOUDREAUX and Hotel Trundle. BOUDREAUX, a local design firm, cobbled together three historic buildings totaling 35,000 square feet to create mixed-use space that includes a 41-room boutique hotel and offices. This lofty undertaking took advantage of every available financial incentive, including the Abandoned Buildings Revitalization Act, the Bailey Bill, tax credits and façade easements. This successful tax credit project exemplifies a unique approach to downtown development partnerships. 

To add strength upon strength, Hotel Trundle’s owners, Rita Patel and Marcus Munse, showcased the products of 50 local businesses in the hotel. The hotel highlights local artists, historic pressed tin ceilings and original wallpaper remnants in its eclectic design. 

Developing and implementing a shared vision for downtowns is critical to stimulating economic growth, creativity and activity. How are you strengthening your core?