Pearl celebrates 'Great Places in America' designation

Pearl one of 15 places to receive designation

SAN ANTONIO – The Pearl had a celebration on Wednesday after it was named one of 15 "Great Places in America" by the American Planning Association. 

Silver Ventures, a private equity firm, purchased the former Pearl Brewery location in 2002. 

Its real estate group managing director praised its partnerships with the city, county and San Antonio River Authority for helping get the Pearl to where it is today.  

The American Planning Association's website said the public-private partnership was a, "catalyst for historic preservation and economic development in the city center." 

APA board member Ann Bagley said being named a "great place" shows that the Pearl is more than a development, it's a community.

"It really recognizes the cooperative effort that went into between the city and the private sector to really take something that was falling into disrepair and make something really wonderful out of it," said Bagley. 

The APA is a not-for-profit organization. This is the 10th year of its "Great Places in America" program.  

The organization also recognized neighborhoods in Cincinnati, Minneapolis, Montana, San Angelo and South Carolina this year.

Defining characteristics of the Pearl are the unique features the site offers, including the Pearl Park which features a splash pad for children, the Culinary Institute, award-winning boutique Hotel Emma and 50 locally run businesses.

More than 30,000 people visit the Pearl every week, with 8,000 attending the twice-weekly farmers’ market.

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