Posted: January 10, 2023
The redevelopment of Union Pier Terminal presents a critically important opportunity for Charleston on the last 70 acres of undeveloped waterfront on the peninsula. It is the largest proposed development project in the history of downtown. Historic Charleston Foundation supports the redevelopment of Union Pier as a vibrant new peninsula neighborhood that can be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. Consequently, we have been engaged with the State Ports Authority (SPA) and the LOWE development team to advocate for a project that is reflective of the design principles of our world-renowned historic city in scope, scale, and implementation. Robust community engagement from residents like you is also critically important in determining the future of Union Pier Terminal.
Last fall, SPA and LOWE hosted three public engagements events to seek ideas and feedback from the community to inform the plan and presented a concept plan in late October, along with a follow-up presentation to the city Planning Commission in December. While the information shared to date does not yet represent a formal “Master Plan” proposal, HCF has provided feedback on the concept plan in the hope that it will meaningfully impact their development proposal. At this time, we expect the development team to begin the application process with the city in the coming weeks and then to pursue a Planned Unit Development (PUD) through the Planning Commission in the spring. PUDs are real estate developments that are not subject to the standard zoning requirements, but instead work with the local government on a unique zoning plan to allow for flexibility in the development that will result in improved design, character, and quality. HCF believes that a PUD is the appropriate approach for the redevelopment of Union Pier Terminal and is the means to produce a development that is “of Charleston.”
Below are some key concepts the Union Pier PUD should include:
We look forward to continued work with the SPA, LOWE, and the Charleston community to ensure that this unprecedented redevelopment project provides the community and city with visionary urban planning that is representative of the quality urban fabric of Charleston’s historic district.
Read more from the Foundation’s Advocacy Team on Union Pier: