Charleston Livability

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Sandlapper's Journal

An upward view of one tower of the Ravenel Bridge with lights shining on the tower and cables against a dark blue sky.

The Bridges of Charleston County

Charleston’s bridges: connecting the city and its islands with history and architecture. Discover the stories behind the Ravenel Bridge, the Legare Bridge, the Ben Sawyer Bridge, and more. Enjoy the views they offer of the city, the harbor, and the creeks and waterways.

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A Charleston Single House on Meeting Street

The Charleston Single House

The Charleston Single House, unique to Charleston, SC, features a narrow, side-facing layout influenced by Caribbean architecture. Key design elements include side piazzas and central hallways. This style maximizes lot use, improves ventilation, and offers fire protection, reflecting historical and cultural adaptation.

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An aerial view of Charleston with the High Battery and Low Battery

Homes on The Battery

The Battery, a seawall and promenade, defines Charleston’s southern boundary. It has a long history of construction, destruction, and expansion since the 1720s. The Battery consists of two sections: the High Battery and the Low Battery, each with different heights and eras. It is home to many historic and grand homes, as well as the public park White Point Garden.

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An aerial fisheye lens view of Riverfront Park in Charleston, with the park area and concert stage in the center, surrounded by coastal water views of the surrounding river along the bottom

Charleston Music Festivals

Charleston’s musical heartbeat isn’t confined to clubs. A dynamic festival scene explodes throughout the year, offering experiences as diverse as the city itself. From jazz-drenched Piccolo Spoleto to the boat-rocking High Water Fest, each festival pulses with unique rhythms, ensuring music lovers find their perfect Charleston soundtrack.

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Stamps and Coins of South Carolina

The postage stamps, ranging from the Charleston Sesquicentennial in 1930 to the Poinsettia Day stamp in 2013, vividly depict significant events, landmarks, and cultural elements that define South Carolina.

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An artist rendering of the proposed Lowcountry Lowline, showing a paved path beneath a freeway overpass bordered by plantings and lights, with a man on a bicycle with a dog

The Lowcountry Lowline

A transformative project through the center of the peninsula of Downtown Charleston is in the works – a linear park reconnecting neighborhoods, existing infrastructure, and the natural beauty of Charleston.

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A flooded street in downtown Charleston with stormwater flowing into a drain, with the steeple of St. Philips Church in the background

A Check on Tidal Street Flooding

Charleston combats tidal flooding by installing check valves in stormwater drains, effectively reducing street flooding during high tides. Early results are promising, and the city plans broader implementation.

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Satellite image of Hurricane Hugo making landfall at Charleston in September 1989

After Hugo: A Stronger Charleston

Charleston became stronger after Hurricane Hugo in 1989 by improving its building codes, ecosystems, infrastructure, emergency preparedness, and economic diversity. Measures were taken to reduce the vulnerability and enhance the resilience of the Lowcountry to future storms.

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An artist's rendering of the proposed Gateway Walk Park and Liberty Center, a bricked walkway with outdoor cafe and people walking among many native plantings and trees

Liberty Center

A proposed a plan to revamp the street level at 151 Meeting Street by activating its covered walkway flanked by stone pillars, which is already continuous with the city sidewalk beyond it.

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A Walkable Goose Creek

The central village would be a vibrant urban core of shops, restaurants, residences, and offices with plenty of green space, all to enhance the livability of Goose Creek.

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A photo of astronaut Dr. Ron McNair standing next to a model of the Space Shuttle with an American flag behind him

Astronaut Ron McNair

From the Ronald E. McNair Science and Technology Center in Charleston to the Ronald E. McNair Aerospace Charter School in North Charleston, his impact on educational programs is profound. McNair’s story is a testament to overcoming adversity and inspiring the next generation to reach for the stars in pursuit of knowledge and discovery.

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