Behind The Scenes: Poe West

We all know that Greenville spoils us when it comes to food. I mean, you don’t just get deemed a “Foodie Paradise” by Southern Living for nothing. But with national recognition comes a whole new level of foodie expectations.

The Furman Co. saw an opportunity to help Greenville meet these expectations back in 2016 and are ready to see their idea come to life.

If you still feel like you’re under that rock we talked about last month, not to worry. I recently sat down with the project developer, Robert Poppleton, so he could give us the lowdown on Poe West and its culinary-centered vision that is going to change Greenville.

In 2016, the city’s “food renaissance” was in full swing, and Robert and his team knew that with the Center for Culinary and Hospitality Innovation (CHI) with Greenville Tech Foundation at the center of their project, they could create a food culture that has yet to be matched. Once the partnership and location were secured, Poe West began strategically building upon this foundation to build what is at the core of Poe West -- a  destination for a variety of ways to spend your days (and nights).

This included selecting a strong list of tenants with the same mission and community-driven goals as CHI. For a refresher, check out the list of tenants from our last post.

Reflecting its own neighborhood, Poe West was built with the idea of creating a community around food and innovators and the many impacts it can have on a neighborhood, like bringing new jobs to the area, and providing education and exercise opportunities as well.

I’ll give you the full history lesson another time, but the team wanted to create something that had never been done before in Greenville: a culinary mecca that brings education, health, and job opportunities to the community for a collective experience.

The team saw the growth in the culinary and hospitality scene here and created an entirely new culture out of it. Though not all of the tenants revolve around food and hospitality, each of the tenants recognize the project’s vision and are on board with living that out.

For what seemed like a crazy idea to most back in 2016, Robert and his team have created a collaborative atmosphere with thoughtful players and a stellar location.

Tenants have already started thinking of ways to work with each other. I’ve even heard some rumblings of whiskey and chocolate pairings and team building exercises in the kitchen (looking at you Greenville Tech). 98 Ventures currently has Unlocked Coffee brewing in their office and the newest coffee spot is not even open yet.

While only one of the team players has officially moved in, all of the others are onsite and ready to go. It’s only a matter of time before all of their doors will be open to you.  

Wondering who will move in next? Check back in with me next week to find out.  

Until next time,

-- Kamber

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