The Sterling Land Trust

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Several Sterling Land Trust Board Members were spotlighted in a GSA Business article written by Liz Segrist. The name of the article is: Sterling trust needs financing to buy milI. It eloquently describes our struggle to finance the Plush Mill project. Here is an excerpt and a link:

The Sterling Land Trust is in a race against time to raise the financing needed to buy the Plush Mill, which signifies Sterling’s rebirth on Greenville’s West Side.

The trust, a nonprofit formed in 2010, must raise $450,000 to buy the mill land by June 1 or its deal with the mill owner expires. The trust has raised $605 thus far, according to its website.

The Sterling Land Trust wants to buy, renovate and lease out the Plush Mill and its 3 acres to commercial tenants to bring jobs and hope back into a community plagued with poverty and blight.

An undisclosed, health services-related tenant plans to occupy 35,000 square feet of the mill — if financing can be secured in time.

Time has taken its toll on the vacant mill along Highway 123 in Greenville. But the Sterling Land Trust, a group of residents led by Dot Russell, sees potential.

“The mill will serve as the catalyst to bring jobs back into the community for its residents,” said Russell, the land trust chairwoman and Sterling Neighborhood Association president. “It will jump-start everything.”


Mr. Mack Lockhart, President of the Sterling Land Trust, was recently featured in a great article in the Greenville Journal by April A. Morris, entitled Fighting for Community. Here is an excerpt and a link to the entire article:

Like many in his generation, Lockhart was raised in a village-like neighborhood and the people he knew helped to make him who he is today, he said. “What you see now is people don’t even know their neighbors,” he said.

In the Sterling community, Lockhart wanted to help restore that village closeness, and so became involved in the Sterling Community Land Trust about four years ago.

“We want to strengthen and engage the people in the community,” he said. “We know the ingredients of the village; it’s a combination of seniors and kids and all built on respect, which is a lost word now.

“While people are dispersed in other neighborhoods, there is still this thing of segregation that looms. I think we have the opportunity to build on the legacy of the past, but the legacy of the past has to be preserved and told in honest dialogue.”