Greetings Greenville. My name is Hank Murphy and I’ve been in Greenville now for almost a week as the new editor of the Herald-Banner.

Greetings Greenville. My name is Hank Murphy and I’ve been in Greenville now for almost a week as the new editor of the Herald-Banner. Since then, I’ve made several initial observations about the city – a community that seems vibrant, warm and welcoming.

First, it’s apparent that Greenville is in the midst of a growth spurt commensurate with its rising population. A new travel plaza along I-30 appears to be in the works, new subdivisions are springing up, and, I understand, some of the schools here are approaching capacity.

I’ve been intrigued by a number of interesting commercial enterprises at the heart of the city – Landon Winery and the Texan Theater – to name a few. I’ve run across a great little spot for street tacos and stumbled upon CB’s, a convenient little sandwich and burger place on Wesley at the southern fringes of downtown.

I’m also eager to play Greenville’s Wright Park municipal golf course, which apparently underwent significant improvements only a few years ago.

As part of my initiation to the city, I’ve driven around neighborhoods in the older sections of Greenville and would characterize them as a mixed bag of well maintained and tastefully renovated older homes interspersed with properties in various stages of dilapidation.

I’ve noticed, too, streets in various stages of disrepair with heaved and cracked pavement, potholes, and crumbling curbs and gutters. Many of Greenville’s streets are in poor condition, but the worst seem to be concentrated in the older parts of the city.

I know this is hardly a newsflash to anyone who has lived or worked here for any period of time. In fact, Greenville voters – by an overwhelming margin – passed a $50 million issue in the spring devoted to improving the city’s streets. Hopefully, many of those older streets in advanced stages of deterioration can be addressed.

Still, as any civil engineer can tell you, keeping streets in good shape is a never-ending challenge – one that requires hefty outlays year in and year out.

Hopefully, Greenville’s expanding tax base will produce enough revenue to help the city meet its costs associated with new development as well the infrastructure needs in all sectors of the city, including the streets of old Greenville.

Greenville is hardly alone in wrestling with potholes, dilapidated property and worn out infrastructure. The age-old problems afflict cities across the state.

Despite these challenges, Greenville appears to have many good and exciting things going for it. Its citizens have many reasons to be optimistic about its future.

I’m eager to see how it all unfolds.

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