Hold on to your hats dear readers…
The Elliotborough neighborhood in Downtown Charleston is on the rise – and it is rapid. While I have been writing about this neighborhood and its developments for years, nothing compares with what is about to come.
Take a look at this map I made for a little more insight. The blue shapes are new developments, the red dots are sales since March 1, 2013, the green dots are properties currently on the market (not too many to choose from), the fork and knife icon are restaurants that currently exist along with a few proposed ones (though there are a few I cannot mention since I am SWORN to secrecy until they are public), and the little turquoise figure represents yoga studios – a sure sign of a neighborhood on the rise (coffee shops too!). Click that little icon on the upper right of the map for a fullscreen experience.
Let’s talk about Courier Square, the development that will spur the change of everything in its vicinity. On the 12 acre parcel of land, bounded by Line, Meeting, St Philip and Spring Streets, currently owned by Evening Post Industries, publisher of our daily newspaper, The Post & Courier, you’ll see apartments, office, retail and parking alongside a proposed greenway leading all the way up to Mount Pleasant Street. The project has already been conceptually approved by the Board of Architectural Review, and construction should commence by Fall of 2014. What do you think??
Personally, I think the design is gorgeous and much more inspired than the buildings that have been going up on Meeting Street. (Sorry architects, but they all look the same!) Here’s a great article from Live5News if you’d like to read more about Courier Square. And of course, the Evening Post has an entire website dedicated to the project.
Here is how I think this development, plus all the other things going on in Elliotborough will change the game here.
Spring Street and Cannon Street are the new commercial frontier – Upper King Street rents are edging up into the 40s, as in 40s per square foot triple net, and will certainly go even higher as the Midtown project is completed and Courier Square begins. As this price range is out of reach for many local businesses – Spring and Cannon Streets with their mix of residential and retail has become the best place for them to go. There is a great mix of retail and services already there, and restaurants are popping up at every corner. Check out Chez Nous on Payne Ct – a recent renovation by the owners of Bin 152. Including a brand new filtration system, check out http://watersoftenerguide.com/fleck-water-softener-reviews to know more about hard water and the problems it can cause. Once a tiny little residential house – now a warm and chic french bistro.
Spring Street and Cannon Streets will become two-way streets – this has been slated to happen for years now. I am not sure why the delay but I do know they needed to finish the Crosstown construction first. Taking the streets from one-way to two-way will slow traffic, create a more neighborhood feel, and the addition of new landscaping, hardscaping and lighting, should go a long way toward making it feel safe and lively.
Line Street is new residential frontier – much like Bogard Street was the frontier 5-7 years ago, just one block up, Line Street has extraordinary opportunities for ‘pretty-fication’. Prices are still below those of Bogard Street, and renovation opportunities abound. I actually have a little house on the market just off the corner of Line and Coming Street at 273 Coming. It’s an amazing renovation of an historic home, smack dab in the middle of the Elliotborough Explosion. See below for more photos if you like.
1322256 – Details: 273 COMING ST, CHARLESTON, SC – $325,900
Short term rentals, new businesses, and more full time residents will demand more services – in a recent post of mine, you read that Elliotborough is the only neighborhood in town where you can do legal short-term rentals (terms of less than 30 days). Thus in addition to the increase of full time residents, you also have an influx of visitors to the area. More people need more stuff, so I believe you will see the addition of some great corner grocery stores, drugstores and the like over the next couple years. The mark of a truly great urban neighborhood is one that can fulfill its inhabitants daily needs, right?
So, that’s my two cents on the explosive growth of Elliotborough happening now, and still yet to come. Five years from now it will be almost unrecognizable from just five years ago. Good or bad, change is here to stay…and I am pretty excited about the majority of it.