The Riverwalk in Rock Hill, South Carolina is a community constructed on the sight of the 1940’s built Celanese Acetate Filament Plant.
The new community development contains housing, dining, shopping and athletic venues. The old plant is a major part of Rock Hill’s history and economy, employing at it’s peak over 2,300 people from the 1940’s until it closed in 2005. In 2008 the land was bought by the Assured Group and they initiated a cleanup operation on the site. Soon after, The Assured Group and the City of Rock Hill combined their efforts. Controlled by the new consortium, 250 acres of land, worth over eight million dollars, was used to create new cycling and nature areas.
Quotes from video:
“The vision to create an outdoor lifestyle was accomplished. Riverwalk has walking and biking trails, athletic fields, and a canoe and kayak launch, among other amenities. It is also home to two world-class cycling facilities. This makes it a destination for many, not only from outside of the Carolinas, but from outside of the United States as well. And, with the UCI BMX Championship happening in Rock Hill next year, the city expects major economic impacts.
The Mayor of Rock Hill, Doug Echols, explains further, “We will have 3,300 riders from 45 countries and probably 20 to 30 thousand visitors from around the world and that’s over a ten day period and we project the economic impact to seesomewhere between 10 and 13 million dollars.”
This, of course, was all part of the master plan. Rock Hill has a long history in using sports tourism for economic development. Mayor Echols explains, “Over the last ten years, we’ve done around 141 million dollars of direct economic impact with all of our sports venues and just last year, was right at 21 million.”
You can find out more about the Rock Hill cycling amenities and calendar of event HERE.