Clifton Mill redevelopment plans unveiled

OneSpartanburg, Inc. on Monday announced a public-private partnership with Greenville developer M Peters Group to redevelop the former Clifton Mill Number Two site, further indication of development interest progressing towards the east side of Spartanburg.

Spartanburg County, which acquired the site in 2013 for $ 226,000, will transfer 30 acres to the developer for public improvements and private redevelopment. Upon completion of the project, the M Peters Group will transfer 19 acres of public space to the county as a public park. The development is a $ 60 million investment from the M Peters Group.

Residential and commercial development, as well as improvements to parks and recreation, are all elements of the project.

“There are 30 acres there right now and we don’t need 30 acres to develop our development. There is no reason why we should take more than we need. So what we’re going to do is make public improvements, ”said Mark Peters, President of M Peters Group, of the partnership. “Rather than paying the county money, we’re going to do an exchange. The county is working with us to give us an economic development agreement. This way we can charge rents which can be taken care of by this community.

The departmental council unanimously approved the development project on Monday evening.

M Peters Group plans to build a 239 unit multi-family residential development with studios, 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments, all with views of the Pacolet River. The apartments will be at market price. The architects of the project are Perkins & Will and SGA Narmour Wright Design.

Conceptual rendering of the proposed development of Clifton Mill.

“All of these buildings are placed to maximize the view of the river instead of running straight along the bank as they typically might be,” Jennifer Gosnell, executive vice president of the M Peters Group said about of residential design. “These are tilted and moved, trying to get around to allow anyone who lives here to have a view of the river. “

The redevelopment will also include 7,000 square feet of commercial space with the intention of incorporating a riverside restaurant and location for kayak rentals. M Peters Group plans to improve the existing informal launching of kayaks on the river and transform it into a formal livery with a take-out service 3 hours downstream in Pacolet.

Clifton Park, including Clifton Beach, will undergo improvements. The M Peters Group will build public baths and picnic shelters for beach goers and improve a small playground in the park.

The developers are announcing plans to redevelop Clifton Beach and Park into residential and commercial space, as well as to improve the current beach and park.  The beach and the site of the old mill can be viewed in Clifton on Friday, November 12, 2021.

To play. Lawyer. Live Well !, or PAL, also helps in the recreational advancements of the redevelopment by expanding the Daniel Morgan trail system with an additional 4.1 mile connector between Glendale and Clifton. The county and M Peters Group will team up to provide a pedestrian bridge over the river to connect to the trail.

Laura Ringo, Executive Director of PAL, said the collaboration with M Peters Group is helping the overall progress of the Daniel Morgan Trail System, or The Dan, a 50-mile urban test system from a collection of future and existing trails. in Spartanburg. Ringo says that one of The Dan’s long-term goals is to develop a trail system that connects the Middle Tyger River to the Pacolet River.

“Partnering with the M Peters Group on this project has given us the opportunity to reach an important milestone in this progress,” Ringo said. “This will be an opportunity to connect two of our very beautiful natural facilities, Lawson Fork Creek and Pacolet River, so we are thrilled to be a part of that.”

Another transformation for one of Spartanburg’s historic textile factories

The redevelopment of Clifton Mill represents a new dawn for another of Spartanburg’s historic textile sites. Over the past decade, several more mill renovation projects started throughout the county, including the Redevelopment of the Drayton plant, Inman Mill and the next Converse Mill project, to name a few.

Clifton Mill No. 2 was built in 1888 as part of the Clifton Manufacturing Company, founded by Dexter Edgar Converse in 1880.

The mill was damaged in 1903 after the Pacolet River flooded, but was rebuilt and expanded in the 1950s. The decades that followed brought various owners and a number of financial difficulties to Site # 2, but l The factory operated to some extent in the 1990s. After 124 years, the historic mill was finally demolished in 2012.

After the county bought the property in 2013, it used the popularity of Clifton Beach to further develop Clifton Park. The area has undergone some recreational improvements since the purchase. However, the beach was provisionally closed earlier this year after two drownings during the summer.

The developers are announcing plans to redevelop Clifton Beach and Park into residential and commercial space, as well as to improve the current beach and park.  The beach and the site of the old mill can be viewed in Clifton on Friday, November 12, 2021.

County Councilor David Britt said the redevelopment of Clifton Mill by the M Peters Group would improve overall beach and park safety.

“We’re still going to include our parks and recreation people there, keeping the area clean, but it’s just going to be different,” Britt said. “It won’t be a river you jump into, it will be a nice park. I think it will be an improvement and I don’t think we will have these issues down the road.

Britt described the M Peters group’s vision for development as a transformative for the Clifton area.

“They are going to reinvent the Clifton, Cowpens and Glendale area,” said Britt. “It will impact this whole region not just for the rest of our lives, but for generations to come.”

Kathryn Casteel covers Growth and Development for the Spartanburg Herald-Journal. Contact Kathryn at or on Twitter @kathryncasteel.

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