TRG’s Jeff Randolph Appointed to City of Greenville Planning Commission

TRG founder Jeff Randolph was appointed to the seven-member City of Greenville Planning Commission in March 2020 and began serving in April. “The Planning Commission makes recommendations to the City Council on zoning and annexation issues; reviews and approves all new subdivisions and is involved in comprehensive planning to improve the health and welfare of the public.”

The two-time Clemson graduate, with a Bachelor’s in Political Science and Master’s of City and Regional Planning brings a wealth of planning and development experience and knowledge to the diverse board. Jeff has been a resident of Greenville County since 1984 and became a Greenville city resident in 2018. In 1994, he founded TRG (The Randolph Group), a residential and mixed-use residential development company that has received national recognition for its award-winning communities in the Southeast.

Commenting on his unique perspective Jeff said:

“With my planning and development background, I feel like I can make an informed contribution. Greenville is an award-winning city that continues to expand with dynamic and varied plans being proposed. Much of that success is owed to past planning. As Greenville continues to purposely grow planning is an essential component of that process. Getting to work with highly competent city staff responsible for this area and such a diverse and committed board is very rewarding. “

“Our city is a leader in the Palmetto State and has a positive influence on the planning of surrounding cities and municipalities. This provides an opportunity for me to contribute to our smaller cities and communities which is also exciting. Greenville is an impact city and it’s humbling to serve in a capacity that can make a positive, long-term impact for not only today’s but future residents as well.”


“Our city’s highest priority is making sure Greenville grows the right way. Jeff Randolph has long been a community leader in promoting careful planning to preserve our quality of life. His service on the Planning Commission will be invaluable.”
Greenville Mayor, Knox White


Mr. Randolph has previously served on the Greenville Affordable Housing Task Force, other non-profit related groups, and his church. He is a respected leader both professionally and personally. TRG’s offices are located in Greenville’s historic West End providing him with a stakeholder position as a business owner and resident of Greenville. In addition to developing imaginative neighborhoods across the Southeast and many in the Upstate, TRG has been part of several successful affordable development initiatives in Greenville.

The Randolph Group
607 Pendleton Street, Suite 200
Greenville, SC 29601
864.239.6683 tel
info@trgcommunities.com

Community Amid COVID-19

The word “community” seems to be a direct contrast to the protocols for the COVID-19 global pandemic. Most of us are already weary of those new phrases the virus has forced upon our lexicon, social distancing and stay in place. Spots on big box stores remind us that we are to remain 6’ apart. The necessary addition of masks and gloves seems to ensure that a sense of community is not allowed. Or is it?

The sense of community in the midst of pandemic isolation seems preposterous. Americans are social animals. We enjoy more freedoms than most citizens in other countries. And we are rightfully proud of our freedoms and those who serve, served and those who died to preserve them in the past. We don’t like having our freedoms suspended, or delayed whether by order, request or suggestion.

Those who have lived in snow states with harsh winters remember the battles with cabin fever in the midst of blizzards and a week or two of snow and ice storms. Cooped with the kids out of school and too cold to be out for long. However, COVID19 is an altogether different beast. Even in cold states, you could gather with your neighbor in each other’s homes for a break, go to a restaurant, bar, fitness center, or even church for those able to remain open. But this is different. This is about limiting movement and with the shut down of non-essential businesses, or organizations we are really feeling the pinch in our innate sense of freedom that we normally enjoy.

We know “Community” incorporated into a well designed mixed-used traditional neighborhood is important for several reasons and has been for generations. Early historical examples of early mixed-use communities were medieval villages of the 5th-15th centuries such as in France and Italy. Built with density in mind and surrounded by sturdy city walls, the medieval village is the perfect example of a functional, productive community, incorporating all the rules of mixed-use development. This way of living, whether in the 5th century or today, benefited the residents socially in a variety of ways. The sharing of knowledge and information among residents, the creation of a localized marketplace, and the development of social capital are among the benefits of “community.” And these benefits create a social bond reminiscence of the past.

So how do you enjoy community in these challenging days?

Take advantage of open/greenspace/commons. Spread out among each other but you can still talk and wave from a distance. Just be smart about it. Keep in mind just because children are young and have lower infection statistics they can be carriers and letting your child play with another child in the community could bring the virus home and to elderly family members.

  • Brothers and sisters can play kick or throw a ball in a nearby park without touching one another or touching the ball. Parents, it’s wise to supervise this kind of play and provide hand-sanitizer as needed and good hand-washing after play. Create games they can play without coming into contact with one another
  • Have adults take turns reading children’s book at a certain time each evening in a common area through a portable sound system
  • Have the children write notes to first responders and medical personnel
  • Take walks with your family or alone. Get outside and walk the dog. Exercise releases powerful endorphins and lowers stress-causing cortisol. It helps mental and emotional health even it’s just a little bit each day. Wave to neighbors, stop across the street and chat from a safe distance.
  • Be creative and get the kids involved. Now is the time for encouraging sidewalk chalk messages and pictures. Residents can walk and see them and be encouraged.
    • Challenge residents to put out creative signs on their porch, or front door with encouraging messages or images.
    • Put out your Christmas lights, bows, or something creative on front doors.
    • Use Zoom/FaceTime/Skype to have chats with other residents staying in touch and informed.
    • Designate a day and time when the musicians and singers come outside and perform.
    • Have a dance-off for one particular song every day and blare it out (not late!) in a large gathering area. Bill Withers classic, “Lean On Me” and others have been showing up all over the place. By the way kids love to see adults dance and act like them.

Take your dog to the dog park, or go to the park if you don’t have one and just watch the dogs play. On walks let your dog visit the elderly or those neighbors with special needs, or circumstances that prevent them from coming outside for a length of time. Volunteer if you are healthy and protected to pick up any needed items for them when you go to the store.

Join your neighborhood Facebook, Nextdoor or any other social media platform and leave encouraging messages, vital information, recipes, DIY ideas, or just say hello. Join the conversation and stay connected. Have a contest for the best home project during the pandemic. Did someone recently paint their front door, decorate a porch or patio, paint, landscape, or add plants? Take notice and recognize them.

Use one of these social media platforms to hide an object somewhere in the community on the grounds while providing clues. Wash it off and wear gloves before you put that little troll, statue, or whatever it may be. The person or family that finds it wash, rinse and do it all over.

We need community in our lives. We crave community. Yes, times alone for deep thinking, mental stillness, reading, meditation, prayer, and decompression are essential, but you can’t stay closed off to the world around you all the time. It’s not healthy. Seek creative ways to “do” community at a distance, look out for each other, smile, wave, laugh and share abundantly. The sense of community at a distance is still community!
The best within us comes out at times like these

O’Neal Village is a “traditionally-designed” or “mixed-use” community on approximately 195 acres in Greer, South Carolina, O’Neal Village is what neighbors call the perfect balance of living, work and play just minutes from the best of Greenville and the Upstate. Nestled among gently sloping hills, O’Neal Village features a variety of crafted, single-family homes, townhomes, retail and creative distinct amenities.

O’Neal Village
info@onealvillage.com
25 Noble Street
Greer, SC 29652
A TRG Community

Four Ways to Get to Know Your Neighbors

If you’re new to O’Neal Village or Greer in general, it can be a little intimidating to make new friends with total strangers. We’re a welcoming bunch, though, and there’s no need to be nervous! Try following these tips to acclimate to the area:

Be on the lookout for openings.

While you’re walking the dog or checking the mail, greet the people you come into contact with. Explain that you’re new to the neighborhood. We all know what it’s like to be the new neighbor on the block, so you’re sure to find open arms in O’Neal Village. If you have children, walk them to the bus stop. You’ll most likely run into at least one other parent and you already have something in common! Pro tip: don’t forget to exchange contact information or follow each other on social! (While you’re at it, follow us on Facebook and Twitter!) You can also join the resident Facebook group to find out the latest events and neighborhood news!

Throw a party!

Invite your neighbors to see your new digs and get to know each other! No need to make it fancy; this is all about getting to know your neighbors and form friendships. If you have children, make it kid-friendly and watch the playdates stack up! Handwritten, hand-delivered invitations work best!

Get involved.

Whether it’s a church (like our very own Haven Ridge!), nonprofit or other volunteer group, find townspeople with similar viewpoints by joining a group whose cause you care about. Look for opportunities to connect; for instance, if you like to read, check out a nearby bookstore to see if they have a book club.

Explore!

Make it a point to try out the restaurants in your town, shop at local boutiques or take a group fitness class. If you have a pet, dogs can be great icebreakers! Taking them to a dog park makes it easy to strike up conversation about where to take your four-legged friend; maybe you could even make plans together!

Baking Basics

Maybe you’re gearing up for a New Year’s resolution that includes more time in the kitchen. Maybe you’re excited to make Christmas cookies and cakes that will be remembered for years to come. Either way, you must walk before you run. With that in mind, here are a few baking basics to get you started:

Always prep your ingredients.

Preparing your ingredients before you start baking will save you so much time and also make you feel like a professional! Use bowls and ramekins to measure everything out ahead of time. That way, you’re not rushed!

Measure correctly.

Baking is a science. Make sure you’re using the correct measuring device for dry and liquid ingredients and always make sure to level dry ingredients, like flour or sugar, off at the top, or else you’ll be in trouble very quickly!

Make sure your butter is at the right temperature.

Prep your butter by making sure it’s at the correct temperature. If the recipe calls for softened butter, for instance, it should be resting at room temperature. If the recipe calls for chilled, make sure to store it in the refrigerator. 

Follow the recipe.

It may seem like a no-brainer, but if you get busy and haven’t given your recipe a thorough glance-over before getting started, a few things may slip through the cracks. Make sure you have everything prepared so that you can follow the recipe to a T. Unlike cooking, baking won’t just work out if you don’t follow directions.

To make things *extra* easy, we’ve collected these great beginner holiday recipes from Country LivingFood NetworkRachael Ray and Delish.

Happy baking! If you have extra cookies, don’t hesitate to bring us some!

Fall Craft Ideas

Whether your kids or grandkids, diving into a little DIY action can be a great outlet for creativity! We’ve rounded up ten of our very favorite fall crafts for those chilly afternoons:

Birch Leaf Wreath

This wreath is timeless, classic and totally easy to make! Up your curb appeal and you may just get a few knocks on your door asking where you got this showstopping wreath!

Wood Slice Pumpkin Sign

We love a welcome sign! While the pineapple is typically used in the South as a sign of welcome, give that a fall twist with this sweet pumpkin and wood piece.

Pumpkin Mason Jars

How adorable are these mason jars? Both cute AND practical, these darling jars can pull double duty as take-home gifts for Thanksgiving guests!

Pumpkin Pot

You HAVE to make these for your Thanksgiving tablescape! When you do, prepare for the compliments to roll in! These are just too cute!

Apple Mason Jar Pencil Holder

We know–Christmas is still a month away, but these would make fantastic teacher gifts! Why not work on these with your little one and pair with a sweet note?

Leaf Garland

This leaf garland is super easy and gives an elevated, yet friendly look to your fall home!

Wine Cork Pumpkin

This pumpkin made from painted wine corks would make a perfectly precious hostess gift for your next fall wine tasting event! 

Marbled Leaves

This one is for the kids! They’ll love using shaving cream to create the marbled texture. 

Color Wrapped Wheat

How purely fantastical is this project? Prepare for nonstop compliments over the turkey when you use these for Thanksgiving!

Felt Acorn Napkin Rings

We love these sweet little napkin rings! Why not use the tutorial to update with pine trees or Santas for Christmas?