You have two chances to see guided BullStreet District Tours, starting Saturday, February 9th

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) – Picture this: a city within a city. That’s the goal of developers at BullStreet District. And you have a chance to see their vision firsthand.

The work at Bull Street District in downtown Columbia continues and tours will be offered.
The work at Bull Street District in downtown Columbia continues and tours will be offered.

“We just put a contract on the unit you’re standing in right now,” said Graeme Moore, owner, and realtor with The Moore Company – as he stood with us inside a newly-built townhome. “And these people will move in during the next couple months.”

Five completely finished town-homes are surrounded by construction of the BullStreet District. If you choose to buy one of these half a million dollar homes, at least for the next few years, you’re getting a bonus history lesson as well. That’s because people who live at TownPark right now look out their living room window and see the old Babcock building, which was once the state’s mental health hospital. But within 20 years, Virginia developer, Clachan Properties, plans to recreate and restore the run-down building whole scene into luxury apartment living.

“It already was the city within the city and we’re trying to recreate that for the modern time,” said Chandler Cox, project manager for Hughes Development. The company is the master developer at BullStreet District. She told WIS that TownPark is just one example of the greater vision for the project, which is now in its 5th year of an estimated 20-year development.

“That really is the goal,” Cox said. “We’re trying to create a community within those four streets.”

“Historic Columbia is partnering with developers to help restore old buildings through new construction. Places like the old Ensor building, which is now home to ‘Bone in BBQ’ and the Parker Annex Archaeology Center, now home to the Department of Natural Resources. Those buildings and others have already been restored and revitalized. Then – there’s new construction – like the TownPark townhomes, which sit directly across from the Babcock building.

“It’s a tapestry… and that’s pretty much what a city is, what a community is,” said John Sherrer with Historic Columbia. “And that’s what’s exciting about this property.”

While there’s a whole lot of potential on 181 acres of land, it could be years before you have neighbors.

You have two chances to catch tours of the BullStreet District – the first is tomorrow at 2 PM with the Columbia Urban League.The second, is on March 9th with Historic Columbia.