Area Focus: Dorchester/Berkeley Counties
Throughout our ongoing “Area Focus” series, we’re exploring the regions of Charleston that are growing, changing, and evolving the most. Read more about it here and check out the posts below for the rundown on some of the other areas around town undergoing significant changes and development:
The Rundown: More than 30 people move to Charleston every day, and they need affordable places to live – enter the sprawling master-planned communities of Dorchester and Berkeley counties. Once mainly comprised of bedroom communities, the area has exploded with an abundance of shopping and restaurants alongside other amenities, necessities, and infrastructure to support accommodate its expanding population.
Why We Love It: Many areas of Charleston have seen soaring home prices in recent years. The median home price in Charleston County (as of June 2019) was $315,000, while the median home price in Berkeley County was $223,250. With numerous sprawling neighborhoods to choose from, families can more easily achieve the dream of homeownership and become part of a safe, friendly and growing community that’s still within easy reach of historic downtown Charleston, Lowcountry beaches and everything else the area has to offer.
Significant Developments: Berkeley County is a hot spot for jobs and homes. Although many residents may commute to North Charleston or other parts of the tri-county area, the area is home to its own collection of job-heavy operations including factory operation for Mercedes and Volvo, an Amazon distribution center and a Google data center. Earlier this year, Berkeley County scored three of South Carolina’s top economic development announcements in 2018, according to the state’s Commerce Department, which tallied nearly $4.2 billion in projects last year.
Berkeley County is known for its large residential developments including the massive Cane Bay and Nexton communities. Recently, the country’s largest homebuilder purchased a 600-acre parcel for $25.2 million. There are also some smaller neighborhood projects on the horizon and we don’t expect home development to slow any time soon.
Restaurant Recommendations: Many of Charleston favorite restaurants have added additional locations in the area including Taco Boy, Halls Chophouse, Persimmon Cafe, Swig and Swine and Boxcar Betty’s all have outposts in Summerville. Page's Okra Grill recently announced they will be opening in Nexton next fall. For even more local flavor, Howard’s Restaurant is a favorite in Moncks Corner.
What To Do: Check out Cypress Gardens for Lowcountry scenery and wildlife. Remember the boat scene in the Notebook? It was filmed here! You can also take a tour of Mepkin Abbey, home to an active Trappist monastery or shop one of the largest flea markets on the eastern coast with over 1,000 booths spreading across 47 acres.
Favorite Spot: Old Santee Canal Park is a beautiful place to explore and learn about the Lowcountry’s history and habitat.