Members of the Horizon Project selection committee will travel to Atlanta and Greenville this week to tour projects completed by the two finalists bidding to oversee a proposed $1 billion redevelopment of the west side of the Charleston peninsula.

Michael Maher, director of the city’s Civic Design Center and chairman of the Horizon selection committee, said last week he doesn’t know how soon after the site visits the committee would make its master developer pick.

“We don’t have a specific schedule for that,” he said. “We are right now preparing some possible terms for agreement between the Horizon Project Foundation and whoever the partner might be.”

The trips come after the selection committee, comprised of city and Medical University of South Carolina officials, last month narrowed the list of prospective developers from three to two: Greenville-based Hughes Development Corp. and Atlanta-based Gateway Development Services Inc.

“In all cases we had very qualified teams,” Maher said, “but what we’re trying to find is a team that has the best qualifications for the project that we envision Horizon to be.”

Delayed for years, the Horizon project was revived last summer with a request for proposals that drew six interested companies by the November due date. The vision is to transform the largely empty area bounded by Lockwood Drive, Hagood Avenue and Fishburne and Spring streets, into some 2 million square feet of apartments, offices and research space over the next couple of decades.

Booting up

PeopleMatter, the locally based human resources software firm, hit a couple of major milestones last week.

On Wednesday, the company announced its software platform had processed its millionth job applicant, an Indianapolis college student who will start work on Tuesday at PeopleMatter’s first customer, Scotty’s Brew-house.

And on Thursday, People-Matter, whose software streamlines the hiring, training and scheduling of hourly workers, moved into its new headquarters building on upper King Street in downtown Charleston.

The company, which also has offices in Atlanta and San Francisco, has been headquartered on the former Navy base in North Charleston. Its new digs, another adaptive reuse, features exposed brick walls and a rooftop patio.

“First day in our new home!” CEO Nate DaPore, a Charleston native, wrote on Twitter Thursday. “Lovin life on king street!”

Cannon fodder

All of the fanfare for JetBlue Airway’s arrival in Charleston on Thursday was all about actor Bill Murray. Or at least he jokingly thought so.

Murray, who has a home in Charleston, was on the first flight from New York to land at Charleston International Airport, where a water cannon, flappers and an elaborate celebration greeted passengers.

Murray, who is also part owner of the Charleston RiverDogs baseball team, took note of the opposing fire trucks created a tunnel of water to mark the arrival of the first JetBlue flight. After departing the aircraft, he quipped to Charleston Mayor Joe Riley that he appreciated the elaborate welcome-home gesture.

Distress signals

When it comes to residential foreclosures. South Carolina was on the wrong side of the trend last year.

A total of 10,526 distressed homes sold statewide in 2012, nearly 12 percent more than 2011, according to a new report by real estate research firm RealtyTrac. The nation as a whole, meanwhile, saw a 6 percent drop.

Locally, Charleston County led the pack with 1,272 distressed homes that sold at an average of $199,315, or 10 percent more properties than in 2011. Berkeley County had 581 sales, or 5.6 percent more, that fetched an average of $138,395. In Dorchester County, foreclosure sales edged down 1 percent to 518 transactions averaging $129,569

Night Out over

The party’s over for Fashion’s Night Out, an after-hours shopping and mingling initiative that grew out of the recession in 2009 as part of New York Fashion Week in September. Sponsors announced Wednesday it will not be held this year. The event expanded to 500 U.S. cities, including Charleston, and 30 others across the globe. Council of Fashion Designers of America CEO Steven Kolb said there was grumbling from some stores and designers that it cost money they weren’t sure they saw back in sales.

Fashion’s Night Out will still be held in select international cities.