Economic development plan unveiled for tri-county

Economic development plan unveiled for tri-county

NORTH CHARLESTON (WCSC) - A new, five-year economic development plan aims to balance growth with quality of life here in the Lowcountry.

The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce teamed up with the Charleston Regional Development Alliance to create " One Region." It's a strategy focusing on Charleston, Dorchester and Berkeley Counties.

"Everybody wants to live somewhere where you have a game plan and we have a very special one," said Bryan Derreberry, CEO of the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce.

The economic development plan took over six months to create, with feedback from hundreds of people across the tri county in the public, private, nonprofit and educational sectors.

"We didn't want ten executives to sit down and say 'this is our plan,' we wanted to whole community to have input," said Derreberry.

Dozens of people are moving to the Lowcountry every day, for new jobs in industries like manufacturing and technology.

According to One Region, employment has increased by ten percent in the past five years.

The plan focuses on how to support job growth but also protect what makes Charleston so special.

"We want it to be inclusive; where everyone has a chance to live, learn and earn, said Derreberry.

It addresses issues to improve on like traffic congestion, road infrastructure and affordable housing.

The One Region strategy is aiming to keep Charleston globally competitive. The plan separates the area's thriving industries by clusters, like aerospace, technology, manufacturing and medical. Derreberry says clusters attract new businesses and help find strengths and weaknesses in each industry.

"In many ways our community will grow into this plan," said Derreberry.

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