I found this piece from NPR online. It brought to mind the Beltline project.
How A Park Helped One Town Weather The Recession
by Julie Rose
July 29, 2011
Mayor Knox White has led Greenville, S.C., for 15 years, and is running unopposed for another term. Here, he stands near a natural waterfall that's in the middle of the city's downtown, in a park that cost $13 million. "Within two years," he says, "over $100 million in private investment was created around the park."
During the worst of the recession, new development ground to a halt and small businesses closed their doors on many Main Streets throughout the country.
That wasn't the case in Greenville, S.C. And while it seems improbable that a city would thrive during the recession, Greenville's mayor credits a mix of good luck and good fundamentals.
Read and listen more here.