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Updating Mill Village Systems

July 29, 2022

Greenville was once known as the “Textile Capital of the World.” By the early 1930s, 19 textile mills called Greenville County home. As these mills grew, so did the mill villages around them. Sanitary sewer systems were also built to serve the community. Today most of the sewer lines in the old mill villages are still in place, and some of the lines are over 100 years old.

Over the past two years, Greenville County has merged six of its special purpose districts responsible for wastewater collection services into the MetroConnects system. This also includes eight historic mill village sewer systems located in the former Parker Sewer District.

MetroConnects’ challenge now is to bring the mill collection systems up to current standards.

MetroConnects has completed the first steps in assessing mill village systems. The cost to replace these systems is estimated to be $100 million. Using robotic camera equipment, we have been able to look inside the pipes. We conducted the necessary surveying, mapping, and cleaning to learn more about these systems and their conditions.

The project is critical to protect our precious water resources for downstream users, will remove excess rainwater from the sewer system, and will help stabilize utility rates and lower long term costs for Greenville County ratepayers.

Pictured Above: Exterior and trainyards of Woodside Mill. At one point in time, Woodside was the largest complete cotton mill in the United States operating under one roof.