Gas up the DeLorean, accelerate to 88 mph and get ready to see thousands of largely undeveloped acres in upper North Charleston and Ladson.
Go back in time, and you’ll view major forests and former plantations. Calibrate to the future and witness commercial expansion and development.
Good idea, right? Sorry, that’s the movies. But there’s a practical real-life way to envision the past and imagine the years ahead while viewing the here and now. Take a ride on newly completed four-lane causeway Palmetto Commerce Parkway and less-than-decade-old Patriot Boulevard.
It’s relatively easy now. There’s not much traffic on Patriot Boulevard, which runs from Ashley Phosphate Road behind Wescott Plantation; and almost none on Palmetto Commerce Parkway – running from Ashley Phosphate a mile west of Interstate 26 to Ladson Road – except when manufacturers let out. The parkway even has historic markers to indicate centuries-old rice growing belts.
“They are pretty empty generally speaking,” says Amy Nienstedt, agent for Carolina One Real Estate. The parkway, in particular, is quiet most of the time. “It’s a four-lane highway; you get a couple of cars,” she says. Yet signs are emerging of the roadways developing into North Charleston growth corridors.
Major employers along the parkway already include Cummins, Daimler, Shimano and support facilities for Boeing. Those four plants and a dozen or so more located there in the past decade or less, and there’s thousands of acres yet to be developed.
That’s been a windfall for neighborhoods established on Ladson, Jamison, Ashley Phosphate and Dorchester roads that are benefiting from the large job producers nearby.
“The area has a lot going for it,” Nienstedt says. “I think Charleston is moving out this way. It’s one more step in this direction,” she says.
The manufacturing centers are lodged in a semi-circular land expanse roughly bounded by Charleston International Airport and Air Force Base to the south, Ladson Road to the north, Dorchester Road on the west and Interstate 26 to the east.
“I’ve worked with several (home) buyers who work with those companies,” says Nienstedt, who lives in Indigo Fields off Dorchester Road. “They want to be within a 15 to 20 minute radius for work.”
Adjacent neighborhoods are a who’s who of North Charleston, Ladson and lower Summerville communities: Wescott Plantation, Coosaw Creek, McKewn, Wellborn Village, Buckshire, Spencer Creek Woods, Eagle Run, Colony North, Paddock Pointe.
Apartment complexes include Colonial Grand at Commerce Park on Ladson Road and Abberly Crossing underway on Patriot Boulevard near the parkway and across the street from Pye Elementary School.
“Throughout that entire corridor we have worked with many families of Boeing, Cummins, lots of Air Force, Naval Weapons Station,” says Jeremy Wilson, agent with Chucktown Homes who is listing two houses in Cedar Grove off Dorchester Road.
He cites another “huge draw:” Many adjacent properties are zoned for the sought-after Dorchester II school district, Wilson says.
Cedar Grove, he says, is highly desired due to the brick construction and executive style homes. One of his clients said, “The reason I love this subdivision so much is because of the culture and the variety of ‘family’ types here ... retired, working, stay at home moms.”
Randal Longo is quite familiar with the Palmetto-Patriot area: His father lived in McKewn off Patriot Boulevard. Meanwhile, he is listing a house in Wescott Plantation for less than $250,000. The Wescott home “is right on the golf course. It’s a great price point.”
Longo runs ISave Realty, a flat fee listing company that does business all over South Carolina. He charges as little as $300 to list a home, and sellers don’t pay him a commission.
“I have 300 houses for sale throughout the state: Columbia, Myrtle Beach, Greenville, Spartanburg,” he says.
Longo noted that Palmetto Commerce Parkway “definitely has brought a lot more business.” At Wescott Plantation, “I see a little bit of it now.” The neighborhood benefits from more affordable prices than some villages outside North Charleston, noting that he has buyers who live in Wescott and work at MUSC.
Between the Palmetto Parkway manufacturers and Patriot Boulevard ease of access, “You’ll see more (adjacent homebuyers) in the future. It’s a great value.”
Reach Jim Parker at 937-5542 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Centex homes at McKewn near North Charleston’s growth corridor offer varied floor plans (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Hardwood floors and a coffered ceiling mark the living room at 4279 Persimmon in Coosaw Creek Country Club, which is accessible from Patriot Boulevard (Provided).×
Crosspoint is a new commercial-industrial site off Palmetto Commerce Parkway in North Charleston (Jim Parker/Staff).×
D.R. Horton’s The Farm at Wescott touts its amenities center off Patriot Boulevard (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
A sizable two-story model home accentuates Spencer Creek Woods, a new neighborhood from Lennar off Ladson Road (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Cummins engine manufacturer moved from the Ashley River in North Charleston to a new site off Palmetto Commerce Parkway (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Another community near the North Charleston growth corridor is The Farm at Wescott (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Joseph R. Pye Elementary School is in the section of North Charleston within Dorchester County (Jim Parker/Staff).×
The entrance to McKewn subdivision is at Patriot Boulevard (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Few cars travel these days on multi-lane Palmetto Commerce Parkway, but that’s expected to change in the years ahead (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Spencer Creek Woods displays a quiet, pleasant streetscape (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
This two-story house is in Wescott off Patriot Boulevard (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Construction is progressing for the new Abberly Crossing apartment homes on the upper edge of Patriot Boulevard (Jim Parker/Staff).×
The residence at 4279 Persimmon in Coosaw Creek Country Club is on the market (Provided).×
A number of homes in Spencer Creek Woods are quite large (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
This cozy house at Wellborn Village from Ryland Homes sports colorful flowers in the front yard (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
A swimming pool is one of the popular attractions in The Farm at Wescott (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Ryland Homes is one of a host of builders close to Palmetto Commerce Parkway (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
The section of Wescott near Patriot Boulevard includes plenty of existing homes (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Boeing recently opened its Interiors Responsibility Center off Palmetto Commerce Parkway (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
An open floor plan characterizes the McKewn sales model (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
Abberly Crossing is across the boulevard from Pye Elementary School in Dorchester School District II (Jim Parker/Staff).×
The house for sale in Coosaw Creek showcases an elegant dining room (Provided).×
Brick accents and other architectural designs distinguish the Wellborn Village residences (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×
The front porch of this Spencer Creek Woods home is wide enough for two lawn chairs (Photo by Laura Olsen/Olsen Imagery).×