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Planning commission takes first look at design to revitalize "ne - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Planning commission takes first look at design to revitalize "neck" area

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CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) -

A vision three years in the making, the master plan was presented Monday.

"There was a desire to figure out the right strategy to balance the competing needs of residential communities and additional growth related to the port," says Whit Blanton, the vice presidents of Renaissance Planning Group.

The project encompasses a 29-square mile area between the Ashley and Cooper Rivers.

"Our area includes the international airport, south from 526 all the way down the peninsula to the Ravenel Bridge.

Blanton, who leads the design team, says the "Partnership for Prosperity," as it's called, will makeover some rundown parts of North Charleston and the City. Blanton says the goal is to strike a balance between residential living and the increase in rail and truck traffic. He says making some roads safer and accessible with bike lanes and new roads is essential.

"Most of them are pretty difficult to walk along on foot or ride a bicycle. Transit is good in parts, but it's challenging in other parts of the area."

He's hopeful the Cities of Charleston and North Charleston and Charleston County will give their stamp of approval.

"The end is really just the beginning because what the plan does is it sets a framework for how decisions can be made. Priorities still need to be established, and the county and the two cities and South Carolina DOT and other partners still need to continue to work together."

The project would take five to seven years to complete.

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