Piggly Wiggly demolition set for Tuesday

Piggly Wiggly demolition set for Tuesday
May 26 14:57 2018 Print This Article

Charleston City Councilman Peter Shahid got constituents up to date on events happening in his Old Charles Towne district Saturday at his monthly Coffee and Conversation with Peter meeting at Charles Towne Landing. At the top of the list is the demolition of the former Piggly Wiggly building at 43 Sumar Street Tuesday at 10:30. The grocery store closed in 2013 and its demolition marks the next step in the redevelopment process for the 2.5-acre property, which the City of Charleston purchased in 2017. The city is in talks with Charleston County transportation officials on plans to reconfigure the “suicide merge” at the property, which also must be approved by SCDOT. The recommended designs are included in the West Ashley Master Plan.

Shahid said there will be community meetings scheduled in the coming weeks to find out what redevelopment plans people want for the property. Some of the ideas previously proposed are a performing arts center and meeting place, a seven-days-a-week farmers market with a restaurant, coffee shop and local produce and crafts, a city park, a botanical garden featuring native plants, and various retail ventures.

Shahid also announced that the planning process is underway for Charleston’s 350th anniversary celebration, which will likely begin in April of 2020 and include events throughout the year. Charles Towne Landing, the site where the original settlers first arrived in 1670, will be the focal point of the celebration. Shahid recalled participating in a parade for the 300th anniversary celebration in 1970. The anniversary will likely be marked with dining events, musical performances, historical renderings, theatrical performances, road races, art displays, and possibly a boat regatta. Shahid hopes to spruce up the Old Towne District in preparation for the anniversary, which should attract tens of thousands of visitors. Community input for the celebration events will be sought.

Other topics discussed at the meeting were short-term rentals, improving area landscaping, and developing a preventive maintenance plan for the city. Shahid said the new city ordinance for short-term rentals does not allow West Ashley homeowners to rent rooms, even though there are more than 1000 current listings in the area. The drainage issue will involve cooperation between the city, Charleston County and the SCDOT. Shahid also encouraged people to participate in the Race The Landing 5 kilometer (3.1 mile) run and walk events, which are scheduled for June 7 and 14 and July 12. The proceeds go toward improvements at Charles Towne Landing.