Jun 19, 2024

Missing Middle Housing

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Drew Grossklaus, Sales Director/BIC East Cooper

In Charleston, like many places in the United States, we are faced with a housing shortage.  The Charleston Regional Development Alliance states that nearly 33 people per day are moving to our region.  The large amount of in-migration with the lack of new housing due to starts and delays caused by Covid has led to a shortage of available homes.  The housing shortage and high demand also pushes prices higher, making it difficult for many to find affordable and attainable housing.  In Charleston this has led to more and more people having to live further and further away from their jobs. The net effect of this is higher traffic as people must travel by car to get to their jobs and spend more time on the road due to the heightened distances.  In Charleston, we also have difficulty with mass transit as we cannot have any type of subway system since we are at sea level. A rail system is also a difficult proposition due to the expense of having to have so much of it be raised in the air to clear established Lowcountry roadways and waterways.

Thankfully we have many individuals who are progressively thinking and planning for the future of Charleston.  One of the of the solutions is the planned Lowcountry Rapid Transit (LCRT), a modern 21.3-mile bus rapid transit project.  The project began planning in 2016 and is currently in the engineering phase with construction expected to start in 2026 and be completed in 2029.  Having the first mass transit solution in South Carolina is a huge step in finding ways to accommodate increasing population moving a greater distance from work, but solutions could be even further advanced with more housing.  The Charleston Trident Association of Realtors (CTAR), of which I currently serve as President, are always vigilant in the needs of homeowners and the situation of lack of inventory and the affordability and attainability issue happening in Charleston.  CTAR recently announced a partnership with Opticos to conduct a study on “Missing Middle” housing specifically in the Lowcountry Rapid Transit corridor.  “Missing Middle” is used to describe housing that is between single-family and larger multi-family housing.  The “Missing Middle” housing types can include duplexes, triplexes, quadplexes, bungalows, townhomes and mixed-use housing.

This type of thoughtful thinking of the future of Charleston’s housing and infrastructure needs are necessary to keep Charleston such a vibrant place to call home.  At William Means, we applaud and encourage this look to the future by our city leaders and real estate partners.

Learn more about LCRT, Opticos and CTAR.



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