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Thursday, April 24, 2014 articles (index)
Verity cancels Greenville mayor’s talk: Development Commission’s announcement shaves the truth

Development Commission’s announcement shaves the truth about reason for cancellation

Verity cancels Greenville mayor’s talk

Jon Verity, chairman of Beaufort’s Redevelopment Commission, confirmed to The Beaufort Tribune this morning, Thursday, April 24, that yesterday he cancelled Greenville Mayor Knox White’s talk that was scheduled to be held this coming Wednesday, April 30, at 9:00 a.m. at city hall.

“He won’t be coming down here,” Verity said. “I don’t want him coming into the controversy and acrimony that have arisen about the waterfront parking lot. Maybe later he could come here to tell us how he has helped revitalize downtown Greenville.”

Verity said that a formal announcement of the cancellation will be forthcoming from the Redevelopment Commission soon.

White gave a talk in Charlotte this past January to members of the Urban Land Institute (ULI), the nationwide organization of major commercial real estate developers, that was the genesis of the idea for him to repeat his talk in Beaufort. Steve Navarro, a member of the board of directors of ULI and head of the Redevelopment Commission’s designated developer of Beaufort’s downtown waterfront parking lot, heard White’s Charlotte talk and initiated the idea to Verity for White to come to Beaufort.

The spontaneous outburst of local, national and worldwide opposition to the proposed development caught city council, the development commission and the development company off guard. They have been reeling from an onslaught of opposition that caused a majority of the council members, including Mayor Billy Keyserling returned that day from China, to declare their opposition to the project.

White is known to have insight into what makes a vibrant downtown. He is a proponent of using the uniqueness of a community’s downtown as the foundation for progress.

The uniqueness of Beaufort’s downtown, as confirmed in Beaufort’s recently adopted Civic Master Plan, is its public open space on the waterfront, unique after 20th-century destruction of views and open space in other coastal towns.

Editor’s postscript: Below is the way the Redevelopment Commission today pitched its official announcement of the cancellation. This official announcement does not tell the truth. There was no scheduling conflict; Jon Verity cancelled the talk. That’s what Mr. Verity told The Beaufort Tribune and that’s what the Tribune has verified from an independent, indisputable source.

cancelled

Click here for the Tribune’s earlier article about Mayor White’s now-cancelled talk.

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