Upstate Forever is a nonprofit conservation organization that protects critical lands, waters, and the unique character of the Upstate of South Carolina. Our three program areas are Land Conservation, Clean Water, and Land Planning & Policy.  Founded in 1998, Upstate Forever now has nearly 2,000 members, two offices, and a staff of 18. For more information, visit

Groups hope the workshops will encourage residents to express their thoughts about the future of Boiling Springs

Spartanburg County, SC — Upstate Forever and Heart of Boiling Springs will host a series of public workshops in partnership with Toole Design Group on Thursday, March 22, 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm and Thursday April 26, 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm at Boiling Springs First Baptist Church, 3600 Boiling Springs Rd.

The workshops are part of a process to develop a shared, community-driven vision for Boiling Springs, a rapidly developing unincorporated community along the I-85 corridor in central Spartanburg County. Area residents, businesses, and other stakeholders are encouraged to attend.

Upstate Forever and Heart of Boiling Springs are working in partnership with Spartanburg County. According to County Council District 2 Representative Justin Bradley, “We are hopeful that the guiding principles developed during the visioning process will help lay the groundwork for future County Area Performance Planning for the Central Planning Area.”

Ernie Boughman, Regional Director for Toole Design Group, said, “This is an exciting time for Boiling Springs. The visioning process will provide the community with the opportunity to express their desires for future development, transportation choices, and quality of life. As a design professional and a resident of Boiling Springs, I can’t wait to see what the process produces.” Toole Design Group is a planning, engineering, and landscape architecture firm that focuses on developing creative yet practical solutions to move people more efficiently while improving the quality of life of the community.

According to Sherry Barrett, Community Design and Land Planning Manager for Upstate Forever, “The upcoming community visioning process will challenge participants to think critically about the place they love and call home – and to explore how it might become even more beloved in the future.”

Heart of Boiling Springs is an outgrowth of Upstate Forever’s Building a Healthy Boiling Springs Cohort, a 2017 initiative that convened a small group of community stakeholders concerned about the health and quality of life impacts of unbridled growth and predominantly automobile-oriented development in Boiling Springs. In late 2017, the Cohort expanded its outreach and launched its new brand “Heart of Boiling Springs: Building Community, Embracing Health, Leaving Legacy” to engage the community-at-large.

Made possible through Mary Black Foundation grant funding awarded to Upstate Forever and a partnership with Upstate Family Resource Center, Heart of Boiling Springs and its predecessor, Building a Health Boiling Springs Cohort, are place-based responses to an alarming local public health statistic. In 2017, more than one in four Spartanburg County adults reported no leisure-time physical activity and 31% of adults were obese. Higher levels of physical activity are associated with places where walking and bicycling is not only a regular recreational activity but also a safe and convenient means of transportation.

To learn more about Heart of Boiling Springs visit