Change comes to all places, but when your city is a small town in the middle of a fast-growing area, it becomes important to manage the change as much as possible.
“We want to keep our small town feel,” said Cayce Mayor Elise Partin, adding that she and other city leaders are focused on new development in keeping with the city’s established identity and culture. “We have a great team. We have some of the best trained staff in the state. They bring a lot of education to what we do.”
Cayce’s Planning and Development Office is in charge of shaping the future of the city, based on the wishes of its residents. New businesses are arriving in Cayce regularly, with a 24-hour Walmart Neighborhood Market among the newest additions.
“It’s a very nice store. The employees were very nice. Had everything I was looking for and then some,” said shopper Margie Dew of the new Walmart. Other residents, however, expressed concerns. “Bad move on Cayce,” Edwina Prosser said. “Another traffic problem for the area. I guess I’ll have to go around. Certainly not going to shop there!”
Conflicting opinions like those are part of the job for city leaders, who have to balance short term and long term and weigh the needs of the many versus the needs of the few. Cayce’s objectives within its comprehensive plan for development underlines the city’s success in retaining major employers like SCANA, CMC Steel, American Investors LLC, and others. Indeed, the plan states that growth in manufacturing will create a “multiplier effect on non-manufacturing jobs, retail sales and establishments, bank deposits, and higher wages.” With the recent expansion of large manufacturers and high growth firms such as Nephron, it’s no surprise that Cayce is now a prime target for major retailers such as Walmart Neighborhood Market.
Some specific economic goals and policies of the Comprehensive Plan include:
- Develop and maintain a balanced economy of sufficient size and strength to ensure a sustainable quality of life.
- Policy: Provide technical and financial assistance to existing industries and businesses, where needed, to help survive present economic conditions and adapt to a changing world economy.
- Policy: Encourage the provision of quality child care service for low-to-moderate income workers. Promote provision of on-site child care by employers to aid employers.
- Attract new business and industry to Cayce, with emphasis on manufacturing jobs.
- Policy: Coordinate economic development activities with infrastructure and service providers, and community plans.
- Policy: Foster an entrepreneurial environment that encourages economic development.
- Policy: Promote the development of planned industrial parks.
Cayce has seen growth in business across the board, with new restaurants, technical, administrative and service establishments opening, along with entertainment options like the brand new Final Door Escape Room. The arts scene is also growing, with new additions like the Arts Initiative of the Midlands.
With Columbia growing, the University of South Carolina expanding, and Lexington County one of the fastest-growing economies in the state, there will be many opportunities coming for Cayce, and the city’s leaders will be ready. Partin was recently elected first vice president of the Municipal Association of South Carolina.
Midlands Anchor will be taking a closer look at the economic development goals and trends of the City of Cayce, as well as the rest of the Midlands, as information and research develops
For more in our Cayce series, click here: