Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Charleston Launches Distribution Center Portal – PortCharlestonDC.com
Oct 17, 2008
Bernard S. Groseclose Jr.
Additional 20 Million Square Feet in Development to Double Industrial Space
CHARLESTON, SC - October 17, 2008 - More than 20 million square feet of Class A industrial space is in development within 30 miles of the Port of Charleston. Now, the South Carolina State Ports Authority (SCSPA) has launched a new tool for importers, exporters and logistics companies to join Charleston’s rapidly expanding distribution center cluster.
A new Web site, www.PortCharlestonDC.com, shows how Charleston’s industrial space is set to double in the next six years. Hillwood, Trammel Crow, Johnson Development, Rockefeller Group, Pattillo Construction, Childress-Klein, Lauth and others have already launched major spec building projects.
One million square feet came on the market recently and has been absorbed. Developers are expected to bring three million square feet online in 2009.
The new Web portal provides project and contact details, as well as intelligence on the Port of Charleston’s distribution and industrial market.
“Everyone is competing for access to the Southeast region,” said Bernard S. Groseclose Jr., president & CEO of the SCSPA. “Based on the tremendous investment we’re seeing, the private sector has great confidence in Charleston’s role as the gateway to the Southeast region. Charleston offers a powerful mix of new port capacity, the deepest channels and superior access to a growing Southeast market.”
The South’s population is projected to expand 43% by 2030, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The region is a well-established industrial zone with significant production, considerable foreign direct investment and expanding consumption.
Driving the impressive push in private-sector investment is the Port of Charleston’s unique combination of natural and operational advantages. Charleston offers the quickest and most reliable access to the I-85 corridor, which includes the commerce and trade hubs of Raleigh, Charlotte, Greenville/Spartanburg and Atlanta.
Distribution and international transportation are an important focus of the state’s economic development strategy. The state offers incentives to encourage increased international trade, and recently, the S.C. Department of Commerce added a senior project manager to work on industrial investment and the recruitment of distribution and logistics centers.
Beyond the 20 million square feet in the Charleston market, several major projects are underway in close proximity to the port, including in the Orangeburg “Global Logistics Triangle” about 60 miles from Charleston. Projects in this area include Jafza USA’s 1,300-acre site near the intersection of interstates 26 and 95.
The Port of Charleston can accommodate post-Panamax ships today, making it particularly well-positioned for trade following the expansion of the Panama Canal. In addition, construction of a new container terminal in Charleston Harbor is underway, which will boost port capacity by 50%.
“If you are an importer, exporter, 3PL, or site selection consultant, you need to know what’s happening in Charleston,” said Groseclose. “The level of commitment and investment is impressive, and we look forward to serving new cargo accounts through these projects.”