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Downtown Developments (South of Calhoun)


Spartan

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I dont think Charleston will ever be a place very conducive to anything but low-profile building. Even the Addlestone Library-which has one of the largest footprints in the city-is pretty low-profile and isn't a sore thumb to the area. I think they are planning for something like a new student center or residence halls on the Calhoun block. As for the BellSouth Building, Im sure Historic Charleston will put up a fight once it is up for demolition. In "The Buildings of Charleston," published by the Historic Chas Foundation, it says that the BellSouth Building is one of the better designed office buildings in the city. That may be true from the outside, but the inside is a maze of dark, unventilated hallways, classrooms, and offices. [i was mainly talking about the building that is on the corner of Calhoun and Coming that is the building that BellSouth currently uses for offices.] Although Im sure that the building will run into the same issues as the Rivers Federal Building with the asbestos, etc. since it was built in the 40s and 50s.

Pictures still coming soon...

The former BellSouth building on St. Philip that you refer to IS a handsome building on the outside, especially for one built in the mid-20th Century, and is not the eyesore. It should be gutted and made more useful for modern times, but not removed.

However, the sprawling BellSouth behemoth on the corner of Calhoun and Coming, with its monstrous parking lot and suburban feel, is the one that needs to be demolished. Let's hope it will happen one day, although I can't imagine it being replaced by only ONE building, but several different-sized and -styled ones. Hopefully, the huge lot can be sub-divided. Anything else built to the street, as it should be, would overwhelm the street.

I can't wait until the Simons Center's addition is built, and we finally see College Lodge, one of the last surviving downtown motels (ugh), FINALLY come down after years of broken promises on the part of my alma mater!

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The former BellSouth building on St. Philip that you refer to IS a handsome building on the outside, especially for one built in the mid-20th Century, and is not the eyesore. It should be gutted and made more useful for modern times, but not removed.

I agree, it is a great building and should not be demolished.

This is the original BellSouth Building:

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Here are the pictures I promised!

Here are a few photos of the new building projects on St. Philip St.

Marion and Wayland Cato, Jr. Center for the Arts, corner of St. Philip and Calhoun (Francis Marion Hotel in the background)

note: as painful as College Lodge is to look at, it actually has the biggest rooms on campus!

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St. Philip St. Project:

Looking south from St. Philip and George (Upperclassman condo side)

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Looking east from St. Philip and George (Upperclassman condo side)

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Parking garage at about mid-block

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Looking back northward on St. Philip toward parking garage

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Looking east on Liberty St. (lowerclassman residence hall/cafeteria side)

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School of Education Building project, scheduled to open Spring 2007, corner of Wentworth and St. Philip

North end of the building, the darker facade is original and used to be the Yo Burrito! that moved across the street (thank goodness).

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The middle of the building will remain open, presumably for the main entrance and some green space (sorry for the flip)

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Looking north on St. Philip from Wentworth (Note the EQ bolts!)

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Looking east on Wentworth from St. Philip (Andolini's, best pizza in town is on the far right)

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Thats the whole ball of wax!

Edited by cofcsam
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Awesome pics, dude! Thank you very much for posting them. This helps other people here at UP understand that Chas is building up as much as other cities if not more.

I had no idea development in C of C was that extensive. I knew they were doing the parking garage (which, BTW, looks soooo much better than the previous St. Phillip garage I had to park in for a few summer classes), but the dorms and other buildings are new to me. It's good to see the college being proactive in keeping the majority of its students on campus.

I guess the old BellSouth building could be saved, but you guys would want to get rid of the hideous radio antenna, right? :sick:

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Awesome pics, dude! Thank you very much for posting them. This helps other people here at UP understand that Chas is building up as much as other cities if not more.

I had no idea development in C of C was that extensive. I knew they were doing the parking garage (which, BTW, looks soooo much better than the previous St. Phillip garage I had to park in for a few summer classes), but the dorms and other buildings are new to me. It's good to see the college being proactive in keeping the majority of its students on campus.

I guess the old BellSouth building could be saved, but you guys would want to get rid of the hideous radio antenna, right? :sick:

I agree--great pics! The infill between the former Yo Burrito and Education Bldg. (which ALSO used to be a BellSouth building!) is great, and looks so fitting for that area. I remember the crappy little laudromat that used to be there--what an improvement! I didn't know that Yo Burrito moved across the street, I read that they just went out of business, sadly. Glad to hear that wasn't so. BTW, Andolini's IS great pizza, and by-the-slice, too. Mellow Mushroom is also awesome, but don't do by-the-slice as much. My old favorite, Norm's, is STILL around and is awesome, too.

So glad, too, that the former destitute parking lot between Liberty, King, George, and St. Philip, and that ugly parking garage, have been replaced by this handsome and gargantuan complex. I still mourn for the old Arcade, though . . . :cry:

Yes, Chas native, they should definitely get rid of the huge antenna, of course. Next time you pass that way, pause for a sec in front of the building and you'll see how well-built and designed it is.

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IThe infill between the former Yo Burrito and Education Bldg.

Oops! The building I refer to above was NOT the Education Bldg., but the School of Business Administration, at least it was in my day (and before that, another BellSouth office building). Years ago, it was also where Computer Science courses were taught.

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Another cofc alum here :yahoo: Moved up to Charlotte two years ago. Thanks for all the great pics, I have not been down in months and the updates are great! As someone who had classes in the Bell Bldg for years I won't mourn it's passing if they finally do away with it. Navigating those stairwells during class changes is insane. It's so packed in. And the competition for the elevators is cutthroat! While I am supportive of all the new projects because they will make an already great school even better, I was not happy about the displacement of Yo Burrito on the corner of St.Philips&Wentworth :angry: I hope the College is sincere in its pledge to rein in their building grab downtown.

Edited by voyager12
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Go Cougars! Im actually from Charlotte. (Go Light Rail! :huh:)

I was not happy about the displacement of Yo Burrito

Yo Burrito is across the street from Andolini's now, next to the old 52.5. YB's new digs are pretty slick and the margaritas are still just as good (and cheap). 52.5 moved to 561 King St. Sad to see it be displaced, but honestly it fits in with the hip-grunge upper King scene. The City Paper did a write up on it a few weeks ago.

Also, anyone seen D'Allesandro's Pizza on the corner of St. Philip and Bogard? (you know, the place thats been up and coming for years but hasn't actually come up...) It probably wasn't friendly country for anyone who graduated more than 5 years ago, but this place honestly has some of the best pizza in town. The area hasn't been completely gentrified yet, and is still predominantly native Charlestonians, but a lot of students live up there now. Check it out, the City Paper did a write up on them too.

Edited by cofcsam
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Ill plug UP at the next Historic Preservation Club meeting. The URST program is pretty small, Id estimate about 50 students or so. The Preservation program is a good bit larger, but covers much of the same stuff. The Preservation degree is "Historic Preservation and Community Planning," so a lot of the planning material overlaps. The URST degree has a pretty in-depth Econ element to it (understandably). Preservation also has a pretty strong emphasis on design, with several studio classes offered/required. Ill be taking Urban Design Studio with Tim Keane (fmr. Chas Planning Dir., now private developer) next semester.

[apologies to any former Urban Studies majors if I am completely wrong]

Edited by cofcsam
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Ill plug UP at the next Historic Preservation Club meeting. The URST program is pretty small, Id estimate about 50 students or so. The Preservation program is a good bit larger, but covers much of the same stuff. The Preservation degree is "Historic Preservation and Community Planning," so a lot of the planning material overlaps. The URST degree has a pretty in-depth Econ element to it (understandably). Preservation also has a pretty strong emphasis on design, with several studio classes offered/required. Ill be taking Urban Design Studio with Tim Keane (fmr. Chas Planning Dir., now private developer) next semester.

[apologies to any former Urban Studies majors if I am completely wrong]

Yes, welcome to the forum, cofcsam! I am an alum, and wished I would have majored in URST now!

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  • 3 months later...

A $40-million luxury condominium project is coming to the corner of Concord and Laurens streets, near the Maritime Center. The 32-unit Anson House will break ground by next week. Twenty-one units are already under contract, including one of two penthouses. The remaining condos start at $1.29 million for a one-bedroom plan. The unsold penthouse has a sticker price of $4.95 million.

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A $40-million luxury condominium project is coming to the corner of Concord and Laurens streets, near the Maritime Center. The 32-unit Anson House will break ground by next week. Twenty-one units are already under contract, including one of two penthouses. The remaining condos start at $1.29 million for a one-bedroom plan. The unsold penthouse has a sticker price of $4.95 million.

While this is certainly good news I can't help but to remember how they chased out the low-income housing that was there for a decade or more because of "environmental pollution" cleaned it up and now, lo and behold, it's suitable for multi-million dollar condos and more. <_<

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While this is certainly good news I can't help but to remember how they chased out the low-income housing that was there for a decade or more because of "environmental pollution" cleaned it up and now, lo and behold, it's suitable for multi-million dollar condos and more. <_<

Was this the same low-income development that was where the aquarium is currently located?

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Was this the same low-income development that was where the aquarium is currently located?

Exactly, they claimed that there was all kinds of pollutants in the soil including creosote, dioxins and other cancerous toxins that needed to be cleaned up, left over especially from an old electrical substation.

The housing situation in downtown Charleston is ridiculous, this is definitely a case of killing the goose that laid the golden egg. As Spartan was saying, even your average resident can't afford to live in many parts of downtown anymore.

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Housing on the peninsula has always been an interesting topic to me. Charleston's height restrictions have made it impossible to build something more affordable by building up (which is why we have skyscrapers to start with). When you add more floors it gives you more sellable/leasable space to spread out the cost of the entire project. Highrises are not the answer, and don't bring prices down, but it gives the opportunity for some more affordable units. It may also come down to Charleston mandating that a certain parcentage of all new units be affordable (by which I mean something other than million dollar condos). $200k in downtown is not unreasonable. $1.2million is.

That said, Charleston won't be changing that height law any time soon. So what to do? Gentrification is one of those things that is hard to stop. In Charleston the contrast is so great between the haves and havenots, which are right next to each other. I think part of the answer will involve expanding the core urban area of Charleston by changing the close parts of West Ashely into an urban district of its own. It would need to be tied in to downtown via a pedestrian bridge of some sort. This idea has been shared here before by some others.

Basicly what I think it will come down to is relieving the market pressure for urban living in another part of town that still has access to downtown (where the action is). Magnolia will be a perfect example of this concept, once its complete.

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It appears as though the Charleston skyline is getting an addition, the only kind it could really get. The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist on Broad Street is getting a new steeple. Of course, the plans for the addition breezed through the Board of Architectural Review pretty easily. While construction could begin in the middle of next year, the price tag for the project isn't known yet.

The article has a rendering of how the church would look with the new steeple.

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Restoration has begun on two buildings on Broad Street, 93 and 97 Broad St., which date to the 18th and 19th centuries and were purchased from the city of Charleston in August 2006 for $650,000. James Meadors of Meadors Construction and Restoration won the city's request for proposals to buy the buildings and hopes to restore them to office or residential use or a combination of both. Meadors said he could not yet estimate how much the project will cost, but expects it will take about two years to complete. The company also is using green building techniques that will allow the buildings to be LEED certified.

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  • 2 months later...

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