Town approves Milliken property purchase


 In a very brief meeting Thursday morning, Williamston Town Council unanimously approved second reading on the purchase of approximately 70 acres of land that town officials hope will spur economic development for the town.

The two tracts of land are being purchased from the Milliken/Pacolet company will be used for an industrial development site and an outdoor lab site, according to Williamston Mayor Carthel Crout.

“I think it is a great opportunity for the town,” Crout said following the meeting citing two reasons. “The industrial site will bring jobs and the other traact will be used for developing walking and jogging trails and an outdoor lab.”

The purchase is comprised of two tracts of land on either side of the Cushman Milliken plant in Williamston.

The 41 acre tract has frontage along the town’s mill village and First St.

The second tract, approximately 31 acres, is located adjacent to the Williamston Cemetery and has frontage on Williams Street. It is within 2 miles of six schools and could be developed as an outdoor labratory with a partnership with the school district, according to Crout.

The purchase price of $150,000 will come from the town’s Capital Improvement fund, according to Mayor Crout. Crout said the money is available and the town will not have to borrow money for the purchase.

Crout said he will be meeting next week with the town’s engineer to discuss the steps involved in having the industrial site certified which will allow marketing of the site by the SC Chamber of Commerce and other entities.

Crout said the primary requirement is for a site to have water and sewer availability.

As part of the purchase agreement, Milliken will grant a right of way across a portion of their property for a sewer line to access the industrial site property, Crout said.

Recent upgrades of the town’s Waste Water Treatment Plant (WWTP) included increasing the size of the line servicing the Milliken plant which could also service a new industry should one locate on the property.

The property is also near a rail line, which he said is another benefit.

Council approved first reading on an ordinance to purchase approximately 70 acres of property located within the town limits during their regular meeting Feb. 6.