The East Cooper side of Charleston Harbor will soon see the development of an 18-acre parcel that will furnish 1 million square feet of office space, retail, hospitality, and residential space. Bennet Hospitality of Charleston and Atlanta-based Holder Properties are the developers of the Ferry Wharf project. The development is already under construction with a five-story 120,000 square foot office building called Portside. Serendipity Labs of New York preleased 30,000 square feet, and financial firm Merrill Lynch 25,000 square feet – a total of 45% of the space. Developers expect the mixed-use site to open this spring.
Charleston Harbor Commercial Development
“I think this surely is going to be the most money spent in one area in our greater Charleston community,” said developer Michael Bennett of Bennett Hospitality during an unveiling ceremony at the site. “Charleston harbor is one of the great harbors of the world…to be able to develop this land on this harbor I take it very serious. It’s a great opportunity for me but it’s a great responsibility for me to do it the right way.”
Plans include the development of a $53 million 175-room Embassy Suites at Ferry Wharf Hotel in the next phase. The expected completion date for the hotel is early 2020. Over the next few years, Ferry Wharf development will build 450 hotel rooms and three hotels, 330,000 square feet of office space, 75,000 square feet of retail shops and restaurants, and 73 harbor front residential units, with 48 being built as condominiums.
Impact on Mount Pleasant Economy
Citing a Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce report, Bennett said the project is expected to generate about $391 million annually in the region. Mr. Bennett said the investment will generate tax revenue equivalent to those of 1,200 residential homes.
“This is probably the most expensive real estate in Mount Pleasant right now,” said Mayor Will Haynie. “This is what economic development is for. You bring capital into the town that was not here before that you do not have to turn around and tax the rooftops of your citizens,” the Mount Pleasant mayor added. Mr. Haynie said the town’s vision for this “gateway district” dates back to the 1990s. “This is what you see when you plan and when you stick to that plan and when you have the right people come along to help bring that to fruition. So it’s a great day in Mount Pleasant.”
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