Although “Main Street USA” is increasingly becoming an endangered species, the citizens of Laurens are embracing their town’s natural charm while planning for its continued growth. “We’re seeing a level of growth that has reversed a 40-year decline in population,” Laurens Mayor Nathan Senn said. “If we’re not there already, we’re very close to peaking our population. And we’ve done it in just three years.” native Pam Jennings. “We’re losing that downtown feel in the small towns where I’m from,” Jennings said. “It’s just nice to see the stores , they have music, they have restaurants. “When a study revealed the need for a hotel, the city’s original plan was to build one next to the freeway, Senn said.” Surrounded by the neon lights of fast food chains,” he continued. “It was my belief that there was a better way to approach it, and whether we would be better served to have a hotel that contributes to life in the heart of our community.” In September, the city filed a request for proposal, opening the door to boutique hotel proposals for construction on Main Street currently housing a bank and half of the police department. The building is a short walk to the town square and a host of local businesses.According to Eric Delga do, the city administrator, the hotel alone would bring in ten times the city’s current tax base. Right now that tax base consists of a handful of motels. “I would say over a year for the city, it’s going to be, benefiting from a little over $600,000 extra a year at the start,” Delgado said. Part of the downtown master plan, the boutique hotel would join a new wading pool, amphitheater and farmers market. With a bird’s eye view of Laurens’ heart, Senn hopes the hotel will make lifelong visitors and even residents of its guests. “It’s that we focus on small town quality of life and that’s actually what drives growth,” he said. “People are drawn to the quality of life here.”

Although “Main Street USA” is increasingly becoming an endangered species, the citizens of Laurens are embracing their town’s natural charm while planning for its continued growth.

“We are seeing a level of growth that has reversed a 40-year decline in population,” Laurens Mayor Nathan Senn said. “If we’re not there already, we’re very close to peaking our population. And we’ve done it in just three years.”

Senn said Laurens’ charming town square has already attracted new residents, like Indiana native Pam Jennings.

“We lose that inner-city feel in the small towns where I come from,” Jennings said. “It’s just nice to see the stores, they have music, they have restaurants.”

When a study revealed the need for a hotel, the city’s original plan was to build one on the freeway, Senn said.

“Surrounded by the neon lights of fast food chains,” he continued. “I believed there was a better way to approach it, and if we would be better served to have a hotel that contributes to the life of the heart of our community.”

In September, the city filed a request for proposals, opening the door to proposals for boutique hotels for construction on Main Street currently housing a bank and half of the city’s police department. The building is a short walk from the town square and a host of local businesses.

According to city administrator Eric Delgado, the hotel alone would bring in ten times the city’s current lodging tax base. Right now that tax base consists of a handful of motels.

“I’d say over a year for the city, it’s going to be, just over an extra $600,000 a year in its early days,” Delgado said.

Part of the downtown master plan, the boutique hotel would join a new wading pool, amphitheater and farmers market.

With a bird’s eye view of Laurens’ heart, Senn hopes the hotel will turn its guests into lifelong visitors and even residents.

“It’s that we focus on small town quality of life and that’s actually what drives growth,” he said. “People are drawn to the quality of life here.”

About The Author

Related Posts