Revitalization Commission looks for simple implementation steps

Revitalization Commission looks for simple implementation steps
March 14 20:25 2018 Print This Article

The West Ashley Revitalization Commission (WARC) held its March meeting Wednesday at The Schoolhouse office complex and discussed ways to implement “simple steps” listed in the West Ashley Master Plan implementation matrix. The plan was recently adopted by Charleston City Council.

Commissioner Jonathan Zucker commented, “I’m inclined to take action now. Branding is something we can do immediately.” Zucker mentioned driving over the Northbridge into West Ashley and not experiencing a welcoming feeling. He recommends upgrading signage and landscaping along the Gateways into West Ashley. Mayor John Tecklenburg suggested that the WARC identify a Top 10 list of implementation steps. He said, “Let’s just follow the plan and get things done!”

Several Commissioners raised concerns about what role they have in carrying out the master plan. WARC Chairman Peter Shahid noted that the commission is not a governing body but plays an advisory role for government entities. He suggested that the WARC should identify priorities and suggest guidelines for issues like tree-trimming standards and how to re-design the “suicide merge” where Sam Rittenberg Boulevard intersects with Old Towne Road.

During the public comment period, West Ashley resident Sheri Irwin asked the crowd of approximately 30 people to raise their hands if they liked the design feature to construct buildings with a minimal setback from the road. Only two people did so. She lamented the decision to build “hideous apartments” at the foot of the bridge connecting West Ashley and Downtown along Savannah Highway. She also asked people to contact the White House at 202-456-111 and ask President Donald Trump to overturn President Bill Clinton’s Executive Order #128581, which created a Council on Sustainable Development. The council has set guidelines for local governments to increase zoning density and spend more money for bicycle paths and mass transportation.

The April WARC meeting will be held Wednesday, April 11.