British Airways will offer nonstop service from Charleston International Airport to London’s Heathrow Airport from early April through late October in 2019. The 8- to 9-hour flight on Thursdays and Sundays will be on a Boeing 787-8 with three classed seatings for 214 people. The ticket’s introductory economy round-trip rate starts at $1,088. About 110,000 travelers in 2017 departed Charleston bound for connecting flights to Europe, and the nonstop option is expected to draw more passengers to the Holy City for more convenient travel for tourism and especially business, as Boeing, Mercedes, Volvo and other knowledge industries grow their Palmetto State operations. Paul Campbell, CEO of Charleston County Aviation Authority, expects $9 million in terminal renovations and expansion are in order at the nation’s 64th-busiest airport to meet the demands of international travel, such as kitchen upgrades to meet the standards required for international meals.
The South Carolina Education Lottery announced that Tuesday night’s winning ticket for a $1.537 billion jackpot was purchased at KC Mart #7 at 303 Lee Vaughn Rd. in Simpsonville (population 22,000). As a reward for hitting the numbers 5, 28, 62, 65 and 70 with a mega number 5, the winner can elect for a 30-year annuity or a lump sum of an estimated $913 million before taxes. South Carolina is one of seven states where a winner can choose to remain anonymous, and there is a 180-day window to claim the prize.
Inland Port Greer’s board of directors approved the purchase of 30 acres of land next to the port’s 40 acres, where operations have been at capacity for the past year, and Ports Authority President and CEO Jim Newsome said planned expansion “could double the capacity” for the international freight movements that link the Port of Charleston 212 miles away and the rest of the Southeast. The increased railroad volume would be in anticipation of even more economic investment in the Upstate to take place alongside existing operations by BMW, Michelin and other international builders. More than 95 million consumers are within a one-day drive of Inland Port Greer, which opened in 2013.
In the three months that Greenville has sought to hire a city manager after John Castile’s retirement, the list of candidates was whittled from more than 70 to three. But in the wake of one of those finalists accepting a city manager offer from Asheville, Greenville Mayor Knox White said that the City Council will put their search on hold, citing Greenville’s “full agenda” of projects, such as affordable housing and transportation, and that getting a new city manager up to speed at this point would be “disruptive.” Not hiring one of the two other candidates, who are assistant city managers in Florida and Texas, is not to be taken as a full assessment of their qualifications, White insists, and that “It’s really more about how we felt good about where we were.” Interim manager Nancy Whitworth has declined to put herself in a spot to be the permanent hire, and White expects the search to resume in 2019 under the same contract with a Texas head-hunting firm.
Despite the second day of the 2018 South Carolina State Fair being canceled because of Tropical Storm Michael, this year’s total attendance of 444,000 visitors surpassed last year’s figure by 16,000, according to fair officials. The 75,000 attendees on Saturday, Oct. 13, the same day the Gamecocks football team hosted Texas A&M across the street in the afternoon, represented the most single-day visitors since the fair grew to a 12-day schedule in 2006. Next year will be the fair’s 150th anniversary.