‘We’re ahead of schedule,’ says BullStreet District developer as REI construction continues

Published: Aug. 12, 2019 at 7:45 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - If you’ve made your way down Bull Street lately, you’ve probably seen a wide stretch of construction right at the corner of Bull and Colonial Drive.

That’s because developers are currently erecting the site of the first big national retailer to make Bull Street District home.

The president of Hughes Development Corporation said the BullStreet District construction is ahead of the 20-year completion schedule. Developers broke ground in January of 2015, so they’ve been at this for four and a half years now.

But even with that message from Robert Hughes, if you look at the future site of REI on the corner of Bull and Colonial Drive from the sky, it still looks like a blank canvas.

Hughes said it’s the first of many national retailers that will announce their intentions to put down roots in the planned urban gigabit community, but wouldn’t say which just yet.

“We let our retailers announce their plans…REI announced their intentions in March,” Hughes said. “I think you’ll hear from other retailers in the near future. Ultimately there will be hundreds of thousands of square feet of retail out here.”

While your future shopping options remain under wraps, builders are making progress on other sites across BullStreet District. Just east on Colonial Drive, work is underway on the new Merrill Gardens active senior living facility as well as a 20-acre public park.

“Walking trails, large dog park, daylighted stream, picnic shelters, gonna be a nice downtown urban amenity,” Hughes said. “There’s a lot of change happening out here. Every time I visit the site, every day, it is different.”

Hughes said REI, the active senior living facility, and the public park should be ready to open by late spring 2020.

“We are ahead of schedule. This is a 20-year development. We’ve said that from the very beginning. And we’re excited about the progress we’ve made...really only being in year five,” Hughes said.

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