Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Port of Charleston: A Bedtime Story

"Port Takes Big Tumble" should have been the screaming headline on the FRONT page of the Newsless Courier today instead of the Business section. Not that the headlines that were on the front page were unimportant, but locals (especially those who have moved here from other regions) need to wake up to the importance of the port's success to Charleston.

Imagine. Little pipsqueak Savannah outranks Charleston for the first time--that's the first time EVER since the two cities were settled. See

How did this happen? Here's a bedtime story.
Once upon a time the SPA decided to build a new container port on Daniel Island for its wonderful access to I-526. As the state dawdled, wealthy locals and Northern transplants built their houses on same, despite the knowledge that a port would be built on one end of their island paradise. Fast forward. . .
Oh, no! these wealthy citizens cried! We can't allow the port to be built on Daniel Island. We must pressure our state legislature, the state port authority, and anyone else in power to build it somewhere else, anywhere else, but preferably in a place where wealthy people don't live! So they did.
And their governmental representatives responded as they were pressured to do. And building of the new port was delayed, and delayed, and DE-layed as new sites were considered and vetted.
Meanwhile, the wealthy homeowners on Daniel Island rejoiced and their homes' values skyrocketed, probably even faster than in the rest of the Lowcountry, because now no imminent threat of (horrors) a port's being built on their island paradise threatened their value.

And everyone on the island paradise lived happily ever after, knowing that no noise or traffic from a port would ever invade their peace. THE END. . . .


The State of Georgia didn't have such myopic influential citizens, apparently, and now SAVANNAH rules!

Will Charleston ever regain its standing, second only to NY-NJ, as a port on the East Coast?

Not at this rate. Not until its citizens take the port seriously again.

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