Columbia, SC (WLTX) - Two big developments in the works near the Hamilton-Owens Airport have people in the Rosewood community excited, and could give the whole city of Columbia a new appreciation for where they live.
"What we're putting together here is really an anchor for the Rosewood community," explains Soda City project head Emile DeFelice, "Other cities have taken advantage of some unused areas, or undervalued areas, and put them to good use like this. This is a terrific location. Our front porch, where people can eat breakfast and have coffee will overlook the beautiful airstrip here at Owens Field."
The plans for Soda City portrays a farmer's market and then some. It will house artisans, feature local and ethnic foods and even a gym over-looking City Roots, an urban farm. Says DeFelice, "If you look at some of the other nicknames in South Carolina - from G-Vegas to Sparkle City to Flo-town to Chucktown, Soda City's right in the middle. And we're going to give them a reason to come to Soda City."
The project just one part of a big boom that's happening in Rosewood, one of the trendiest residential areas in Columbia. "Rosewood has already shown that it cares about local food, with City Roots and we support our local businesses. And we have a lot of creativity here, so the artists and the vendors will feel right at home. I think this is a perfect spot for a project like Soda City," says Jenna Stephens, President of the Rosewood Community Council.
Another possible project: the $5 million restoration and renovation of the historic Curtiss-Wright airplane hangar at Owens Field. The plans are to turn it into part restaurant, part museum and part special events hall. Says Stephens, "I think Rosewood's always going to be a cool and eclectic neighborhood. And I think ten years from now, it'll just be better."
And that could make the whole of Columbia better, too - with more visitors and more jobs.
The Curtiss-Wright hangar project is still in the very beginning stages, but the group behind it hopes to know more by this summer.
The first stage of Soda City could be open as early as this fall. For more information on becoming a vendor inside the market there, email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.