New housing developments continue to gain traction in the Charleston region in response to growth in population and home prices.

One of the latest developments is the official opening of Royal Palms, a 52-townhome community at U.S. Highway 17 and S.C. Highway 41 in Mount Pleasant. Constructed by Lennar Homes, it features 1,700- to 2,200-square-foot townhomes in the high $200s, the company said.

In a Berkeley County hot spot, Ashton Woods Homes has joined the roster of builders in the Carnes Crossroads planned community in Goose Creek. This marks one of the first local footprints for the Atlanta-based developer that announced last year plans to start building homes in the region. The company is building four types of homes in Carnes Crossroads' St. Thomas Park neighborhood. They range from 1,900- to 3,000-square-feet and start in the low-$300,000s.

Carnes Crossroads is a 2,300-acre project that could have about 5,000 residences. Its builders include David Weekley Homes, Eastwood Homes and Sabal Homes.

Nearby, in Summerville, a community named Hidden Hills is taking shape behind the The Ponds development off Highway 17A. Those homes are being built by Lowcountry Residential Builders and include eight floor plans with up to five bedrooms and 3.5 baths. Prices start at $225,000, officials said.

These announcements come on the heels of the Charleston New Homes Snapshot for 2014 from Carolina One Real Estate.

The report shows activity returned to 2006-07 levels, led by Pulte Group and Ryland Homes. The report adds that there could be some hiccups coming into the new year.

"As we enter 2014, we will be challenged by the shortage of finished lots," said Will Jenkinson, broker-in-charge for Carolina One New Homes.

Jenkinson has said the market should get better toward the latter part of this year.

Reach Tyrone Richardson at 937-5550 and follow him on Twitter @tyrichardsonPC.