The Ravenel Gateway District is the object of a Town of Mount Pleasant planning effort to improve the walkable, transit enabled and economically dynamic mixed use district in the area surrounding the East end of the Ravenel Bridge. Last night a meeting was held by the Town of Mt. Pleasant in the Cooper River Room at Waterfront Memorial Park to discuss possible directions. While we and our handout materials were stuck on the #4o bus downtown in the midst of a region wide traffic snarl which had it origins in a semi truck accident on the Don Holt Bridge over ten miles away, the town had printed out our emailed material and transit was extensively discussed at the meeting. We arrived just as the two hour meeting was ending. Thanks to all those who attended and spoke up for transit.
Over the next few years additional commercial, hotel and residential development in this area, combined with the reestablishment of a functional pedestrian sidewalk system with safe access able bus stops as road work ends could turn this valuable property in to an energetic economic driver. It already contains over 1000 hotel rooms, several shopping centers, restaurants, Patriot’s Point, the Wonders Way pedestrian and cycle path on the Bridge and Waterfront Memorial Park. It’s a great place for transit to connect visitors to the City of Charleston on the #40 Trans Mount Pleasant, to the rest of Mt. Pleasant on the #401 East Cooper Connector and by transfer to the beaches on the #402 Beach Island Flex. These same routes also bring people to work in this district and take college students downtown. Years of planning and investment have already been put into this effort and it’s become the largest single source of tax and fee revenue for the Town of Mt. Pleasant and a major source of employment for the region. Tourists from as far away as Germany are already choosing to Park Pleasantly and Play Downtown, enjoying Spoleto Sans Auto.
Our contribution yesterday was a short, detailed survey of the bus stops and CARTA services in the area which you can download as a PDF. Gateway Route Survey Final.pdf (On Google Docs).