Porterdale Mill on the Yellow River
NAMED for: Oliver S. Porter, Mill Owner

 

 

 

OCTOBER 15, 2002
Two major renovations part of Porterdale plan to revitalize
 


The Porterdale Mill is slated to be developed into loft apartments by Miller-Gallman Developers. Work could begin in the second quarter of 2003.
Ron Manson/The Covington News

 

After decades of decline, which have left its most famous landmarks in disrepair, its stores empty and many of its private homes dilapidated, the city of Porterdale is poised for a renaissance.

In the past few months, plans to develop Porterdale’s long abandoned mill as well as plans to renovate the Porterdale Gymnasium have started to take off, the city is close to signing a contract to purchase 30 acres along the Yellow River from the Dan River Corporation for building a park, the City Council has adopted a historic preservation ordinance, and government officials and concerned citizens have begun the process of applying for the Better Hometown Program, which is sponsored by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs and aimed at revitalizing the city’s downtown.

“If we can get all of this together, it’s going to be amazing,” Porterdale City Council Member Rebecca Roseberry said.

-- Nathan Cain - Staff Writer

 

OCTOBER 19, 2002
Porterdale working hard to better town image

The City of Porterdale has been hit with some bad public relations news in the past few weeks. The city council is taking steps to rid itself of long-time Mayor Wayne Maddox. The council recently voted to adopt a resolution to hold an investigative hearing into charges of malfeasance, misfeasance and neglect of duty against Maddox. But things are starting to turn around in the former booming mill town — the City of Porterdale is poised for a renaissance. In the past few months, plans to develop Porterdale’s long abandoned mill as well as plans to renovate the Porterdale Gymnasium have started to take off. Porterdale is close to signing a contract to purchase 30 acres along the Yellow River from the Dan River Corporation for building a park; the city council has adopted a historic preservation ordinance and  government officials and concerned citizens are applying for the Better Hometown Program, which is sponsored by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs and aimed at revitalizing the city’s downtown. But wait, there is more positive news from Porterdale. Plans to develop the city’s long vacant mill are also moving forward. At one time, the mill was the largest cotton spinning mill in the world. It was closed in the 1970s, and its fate has long been a concern of many citizens. The building was purchased by Davis and Associates Development Firm at the beginning of the year and is planned for development as loft apartments in a joint venture between Davis and Miller-Gallman Developers. Porterdale also adopted a historic preservation ordinance in September, establishing a historic preservation commission, which will identify historic structures and make sure any outside renovations to historic structures will not damage the historical value. The Covington News applauds the good citizens of Porterdale who are working hard to revitalize their city. It is not easy to overcome years of economic strife and alleged political corruption, but it appears Porterdale is more than ready to move forward.

 

DECEMBER 10, 2002
Porterdale Historic Commission holds first forum Wednesday

Porterdale will continue taking steps to preserve its historic buildings, when the Porterdale Historic Preservation Commission holds its first public forum.

At 10:30 a.m. Wednesday in the Porterdale Firehouse, historic surveyor Tracy Dean will give a presentation on her work and meet with the Preservation Commission and the public to gather information about historic buildings in Porterdale.

Preservation Commission Chairman Gina Oeland, said Dean comes highly recommended as a surveyor and has experience working with Bibb City, a town that, like Porterdale, built by Bibb Manufacturing, making her a prime candidate to identify and inventory the city’s estimated 500 historic buildings.

-- Nathan Cain - Staff Writer

 

MAY 31, 2003
Porterdale having success preserving historic buildings
Citizens working hard to improve town’s appearance

Porterdale's recent attempts at code enforcement and historic preservation have met with success, according to city officials.

Clinton Fowler, Porterdale's code enforcement officer, said citizens are getting behind the effort to preserve the city's historic buildings and improve the town's overall appearance.

In the last month Fowler said he had issued 70 warning citations for various code violations. The warnings give property owners 30 days to fix the problem or face fines ranging from $100 to $1,000 per day, depending on the violation.

While there have been some hostile responses, Fowler said, most people change their perspective once they learn more about what the city is trying to do.

"Once they get information, they come away with a whole different attitude," Fowler said.

Gena Oeland, chairman of the city's historic preservation commission, said Fowler has learned the basics of historic preservation quickly.

-- Nathan Cain - Staff Writer