On April 21, Self-Help Credit Union announced a key milestone in its continuing development of the Revolution Mills project in Greensboro. LT Apparel Group, a New York-based design and marketing firm, announced it will be a key anchor tenant at Revolution Mills.
“We’re just really excited about how well they fit with what we’ve been hoping to accomplish,” said Micah Kordsmeier, who serves as the Development Manager for the project on behalf of Self-Help. Kordsmeier that Revolution Mill will be a live, work, create space that will include 142 apartments, 240,000 square feet of office space, galleries and restaurants, and space for working artists to collaborate.
Revolution Mill dates back to 1900 and is today listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was shuttered in 1982 as a textile mill and then later served as a small business center. Self-Help acquired Revolution Mills in 2012.
The $100 million dollar project is one of Self-Help’s more recent community development and revitalization ventures. Among its more notable past projects was the American Tobacco Campus, which transformed downtown Durham into a thriving center for people to live, work and play.
Unlike the Bull City’s ATC, Revolution Mill is located two miles north Greensboro’s thriving downtown area. Kordsmeier notes the surrounding area is home to stable, working class neighborhoods, a legacy of the mills that dominated the local economy for a century. “To me the ideal outcome would be for the neighborhood to look largely the same in a lot of ways but to find that Revolution Mill is the center of their community .. a place they come for a picnic on a Sunday afternoon.”
Beyond the opportunity to toss a Frisbee or share a meal on a sunny day, projects like Revolution Mill reflect the credit union’s commitment to the Seventh Cooperative Principle of Concern for Community – and how that concern, creatively applied, can be transformative.
“I think it’s really a drag on a city’s spirit when they see a place like this and it’s in decline,” Kordsmeier said of Revolution. “To bring it back to life in communities that we’ve worked in transforms so much more than the economy – it transforms the attitudes around what the city can be.”