The secret is out…
Yes, Charleston is a top vacation destination, but people don’t want to just visit. They want to live here, work here and raise their families here. Charleston has also become a hot spot for business growth. With our natural resources and increased national attention, companies are looking to open and expand into the Charleston market.
The growth is coming. The question is no longer IF we will grow, but HOW we will grow.
Growth creates a feeling of uncertainty that often garners opposition. But it is possible to protect the quality of life we love and manage the growth… that secret is to PLAN FOR IT.
A look at the Numbers
In the three decades between 1970 and 2000, the population of the Charleston Metro Area increased 63%.
Currently, the region’s population is expanding at a rate of 45 people per day. At this rate, the region’s population will reach one million within the next 15 years.
Between 2000 and 2005, the Charleston region issued more than 42,000 residential building permits.
Since 2001, the average price of a home in the tri-county region has increased 63% from $172,000 to $281,000 in 2012. During the same period, the average annual wages of the area increased 42% from $28,887 to $41,264. The region’s high cost of living and below average wage levels makes us one of the least affordable metros in the Southeast.
The Partnership for Responsible Growth
The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce has joined 100+ businesses to form the Partnership for Responsible Growth (PRG).
This coalition believes in working together to develop innovative solutions that will guide growth as a positive contributor to the quality of life for our region. We believe in planning for responsible growth based around three principles – Choice, Balance and Stewardship. It is our vision to grow in a manner that improves the quality of life for all citizens, including those yet to be born or move here.
CHOICE – promotes giving individuals access to a freer market to enhance their ability and variety of options from which to choose
BALANCE – supports a balance between nature and community in the approach to growth of our region
STEWARDSHIP – believes stewardship involves approaching growth with a full assumption of responsibility for our historic, natural and economic resources
Under South Carolina law, all local governments are required to adopt comprehensive land use plans and update them every five years. Updating the plans requires substantial public input to ensure that local residents are fully aware of development plans and land use regulations. Most importantly, public input is required to ensure that the comprehensive plans reflect the desires of local residents in how and where their communities will grow.
The Chamber and the Partnership for Responsible Growth supports the development process that exists under South Carolina law. If a developer, working with the local jurisdiction, proposes development that fits within the local jurisdiction’s comprehensive plans and long term vision, and follow the normal development approval processes, outside interest groups should not be allowed to block the development process without due cause.