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Economic developments in the Charleston metro area


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Economic development in Charleston is showing signs of picking up

"As reported in recent weeks, Charleston County has two decent-size fish on the line with hopes of landing them soon. While they haven't been identified publicly yet because of confidentiality agreements, Project Aries and Project Quality are looking to invest a combined $76 million and create more than 180 jobs.

Dorchester County Council last month approved an incentive package for a previously announced $200 million expansion of the Showa Denko Carbon plant in Ridgeville that's expected to create about 90 jobs. In Berkeley County, officials this week are holding a recognition event to welcome several new employers, led by the high-voltage cablemaker Nexans. The French company is shelling out $85 million to build a 200-worker plant in the Bushy Park Industrial Complex.

More may be coming based on activity at the development alliance, which markets the three counties to new and expanding businesses."

Project Aries is a planned $19.5 million expansion of Cummins Turbo Technologies at Palmetto Commerce Park that will add 76 jobs.

http://www.charlestonbusiness.com/news/44230-cummins-expanding-in-palmetto-commerce-park

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Why there are so many Hotels rising in Charleston The College of Charleston’s Office of

Retail giant Walmart will build a massive import distribution center near Ridgeville, giving the State Ports Authority an anchor tenant for an industrial park aimed at diversifying cargo shipments thr

More than 6,000 apartments under construction Interesting info on affordability. Upper Peninsula zoning requires 15% of units must be affordable to the 'workforce'.  It seems that requirement is

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Lollicup USA, a coffee and tea distributor, will begin operations in July at its new 63,000 sq-ft distribution center in Summerville and will employ 40 people.

Lollicup cited Dorchester County's proximity to I-26 and the Port of Charleston for its site selection.

http://www.charlestonbusiness.com/news/44246-distributor-to-bring-40-jobs-to-dorchester-county

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Trident Technical College breaks ground on state of the art nursing and science building

Staff Report

Published June 27, 2012

With the help of local government, Trident Technical College broke ground Monday on a $30 million nursing and science building on the college’s main campus in North Charleston.

Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester counties are supporting construction of the 90,000-square-foot building, with each county providing a proportional share of the funding — Charleston County, $18 million; Berkeley County, $7.5 million; and Dorchester County, $4.5 million.

“We are very grateful for the support we have received from our county councils,” TTC president Mary Thornley said. “TTC is the largest provider of nursing education in the Lowcountry and the only provider of training for many critical health care fields. This investment will reap great benefits for our community as our population continues to grow and the demand for health care workers increases.”

More than 300 people helped the college celebrate the milestone, including TTC students and faculty, county council members, legislators and other elected officials.

The new building will house TTC’s three nursing programs and provide classroom and lab space for science classes such as microbiology, and anatomy and physiology. The building also will allow TTC to expand its nursing program from 650 students to 1,000.

Currently, the nursing programs and 10 of the college’s 13 health science programs are housed in a 54,400-square-foot building constructed in 1989, when the college’s enrollment was only 5,728. Today, the college has an enrollment of close to 17,000 students, making it the second largest institution of higher education in the state based on undergraduate enrollment.

Moving the nursing programs into a new building will free up space in the current building that will enable expansion of other health care programs. It hasn’t been determined how much any other individual program will expand. The health sciences division has been asked to evaluate their programs in order to determine priorities for use of the extra space.

LS3P Associates designed the building, and China Construction America of South Carolina Inc. received the construction contract through a state bidding process.

Construction is expected to be completed in fall 2013 and classes will begin in the building in January 2014. The new building is designed to meet LEED Silver standards for high performance in the areas of human and environmental health, sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.

http://www.charlesto...cience-building

Edited by jmmiller
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SC Legislature pledges full funding for Charleston harbor deepening


  • The state funding set-aside would pay for the all the deepening work only if federal dollars do not come through.

  • Under the current formula, the federal government would be expected to pay $120 million of the estimated $300 million cost.

  • The state House and Senate previously had set aside $180 million for dredging, representing the state’s share.

  • The budget including the $300 million measure next goes to Gov. Nikki Haley,

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20120629/PC05/120629125/1165/legislature-pledges-full-funding-for-charleston-harbor-deepening

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The State Ports Authority plans to spend more on capital projects during the next 12 months than ever before, in a plan of upgrades, repairs and new initiatives aimed at spurring robust growth at the Port of Charleston.

  • The nearly $147 million spending plan includes big-ticket systems and machinery upgrades, hopes for upgraded office space and a large slug of money for an as-yet secret infrastructure project.

“This is great news for our region,” said Mary Graham, senior vice president at the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce.

“The port is the economic driver of our state,” she said. “When the port has thrived, the economy of our state has thrived, so it’s good to see them in expansion mode again.”

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20120701/PC05/120709958/1165/port-of-charleston-putting-cash-to-work-with-largest-capital-plan-to-date

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The Charleston area led the state in population gains last year, and grew faster than most U.S. cities, according to the Census Bureau.

  • Among the nation’s 715 towns and cities with at least 50,000 residents, North Charleston, Mount Pleasant and Charleston were all growth leaders.
  • Michael Scarafile, president of Carolina One Real Estate, said population growth is usually a positive sign for the housing market. “As we see growth in population, both from people moving here for jobs like Boeing and because we have a great place to live, that creates more demand.”
  • Tim Keane, director of Charleston’s Department of Planning Preservation and Sustainability, said a growing port, influx of technology-related businesses, good colleges and Boeing all point to growth. “We’re seeing a significant amount of commercial, office and residential development right now,” he said. “There are plenty places that would be very, very happy with the kind of investments we have going on, and the growth we are seeing.”

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20120630/PC05/120639943

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Aircraft Manufacturer Airbus to build first U.S. final assembly plant in Mobile, Ala.

Set to accelerate the growth of Charleston's aerospace cluster of suppliers

From the Post & Courier article by Brendan Kearney.....

The Charleston area probably has a pretty good feeling for what's at play here and what it could mean.

Boeing's decision to put together and deliver 787 Dreamliners in North Charleston is transforming the economy here, with more than 6,000 people working at the company's local factories, and according to Boeing, perhaps four times that many, at area suppliers and vendors, relying on the planemaker for their livelihoods. That multiplier effect is only expected to grow as Boeing South Carolina ramps up and expands.

An Airbus plane-making factory would be a major addition to the Southeast's aerospace community and could accelerate the growth of the region's cluster of suppliers. In addition to Boeing, other industry heavyweights, like Spirit Aerosystems and Honda Aircraft Co. in North Carolina and Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. in Savannah, have major presences in the Southeast.

http://www.postandco...or-southeast-us

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Mercedes-Benz van plant lures Michigan-based automotive manufacturer to N. Charleston

A Michigan company that specializes in delivery vehicles is expanding to the Charleston region, where it will join a growing roster of automotive manufacturers.

Morgan Olson, a maker of walk-in cargo bodies and other components for vans and trucks, said Monday it is finalizing plans to open a factory that will employ up to 120 workers by the end of next year.

Moderator edit: Please adhere to the rules and refrain from posting entire articles. A brief summary and a link to the news source is appropriate.

Edited by krazeeboi
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South Carolina the ‘it’ state at international airshow

  • “South Carolina continues to be the buzz because of Boeing,” Haley said this morning during a conference call from England with S.C. news media.
  • Haley noted that 180 aerospace-related businesses in South Carolina employ 20,000 people. Just last year, the industry invested more than $100 million in the state and created about 900 new jobs, she said.
  • “And, we’re just getting started,” Haley said, noting that S.C. officials have had about 50 meetings with various aerospace firms at the airshow.
  • The airshow allows state officials to work on lining up new prospects, Haley added. “It’s the starting point of the CEO of the state asking the CEO of the company: We want you to come visit and see what we have to offer.”
  • Aerospace firms that supply Boeing are interested in the state because of the business climate, workforce training, and the fact that S.C. is one of the “least unionized” states in the country, the governor said.
  • The S.C. delegation also has met with executives of U.K.-based GKN Aerospace, a first-tier supplier that plans to invest a minimum of $38 million over the next six years and create 278 jobs opening in Orangeburg.
  • Haley said meetings with companies like Boeing and GKN are part of the state’s efforts to make sure everyone is happy and to see what the state can do to help grow the firms’ business.

http://www.charlesto...show-haley-says

Edited by jmmiller
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Good press for Charleston: of the 150 largest metro areas in the country, Charleston ranked fifth for high-tech employment growth from 2006-2011 according to the report "Technology Works: High-Tech Employment and Wages in the United States" (the rankings are on pages 14 and 33), prepared by the Bay Area Council Economic Institute for Engine Advocacy, an advocacy  group of technology innovators and entrepreneurs which seeks to shape public policy. Of the state's three largest metros, it also has the highest share of high-tech jobs with the highest average wage.

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Boeing announcement today that N Charleston has been selected as 1 of 3 "IT hubs" to be established.  While not giving alot of specifics at this time, this good potentially be great news for IT job generation in the Chas region.

 

The N Chas hub will be based in 32,000 sq ft in Faber Place, which is close to the existing Boeing complex along I-526.

 

 

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20130326/PC05/130329432/1177/boeing-making-n-charleston-an-it-center

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Boeing announcement today that N Charleston has been selected as 1 of 3 "IT hubs" to be established.  While not giving alot of specifics at this time, this good potentially be great news for IT job generation in the Chas region.

 

The N Chas hub will be based in 32,000 sq ft in Faber Place, which is close to the existing Boeing complex along I-526.

 

 

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20130326/PC05/130329432/1177/boeing-making-n-charleston-an-it-center

 

That's exciting news! I'll be looking forward to hearing more on this! 

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There have been a number of tech related announcements the last several months, including several local tech companies expanding, Google's 600 million expansion of its server complex and Boeing's IT center.

 

It has been reported that Charleston metro gained over 32,000 new residents in the last two years.

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There have been a number of tech related announcements the last several months, including several local tech companies expanding, Google's 600 million expansion of its server complex and Boeing's IT center.

 

Indeed. Benefitfocus also announced plans to add 300 software engineering and professional jobs not too long ago. It's good that Charleston is getting these white-collar, professional jobs in addition to the manufacturing and distribution jobs, as they are more prone to attract more educated, working professionals to the region.

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More than 6,000 apartments under construction

Interesting info on affordability. Upper Peninsula zoning requires 15% of units must be affordable to the 'workforce'.  It seems that requirement is being met with studio units in many cases though.    

 

By the numbers

Area  Total projects  Total units 
Peninsula   15 2,705
West Ashley   10  1,870 
Daniel Island   4 751 
Johns Island   2 335
James Island  2 326
Cainhoy  1 264
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BOSCH expanding North Charleston plant

The Robert Bosch plant in North Charleston is shifting into expansion mode again.

The German automotive parts maker said Thursday it will invest $175 million and add 150 jobs over the next five years at its 1,700-worker Dorchester Road plant.

Bosch makes advanced fuel injectors and anti-lock brake system components in North Charleston.

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Scout Boats, a designer and manufacturer of luxury coastal fishing boats, is expanding its existing Dorchester County operations. The company is adding multiple new boat models to its product catalog, bringing $10.9 million of capital investment and creating 370 new jobs.

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Saw this in the July issue of Greenville Business magazine. 

Office vacancy and rates:

DT Charleston:  $41.63 SF

North Chas.& East Cooper: $36.06

West Ashley: $32.36

Chas. north suburbs: $26.95

Charleston Metro: 6.9%  Charleston DT: 3.9%

Cola metro: 15.1%

GSP metro: 11.6%

 

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