The Heart & Soul of Mount Pleasant
Almost every town has a heart and soul, an emotional nexus that seems to draw the native’s energy and buzz. Though it is not centrally located within the town, the Coleman Boulevard corridor has been the place that serves as Mount Pleasant’s favorite meet up spot, the place that brings the townspeople together for celebration and fellowship. Whether it is the Christmas Parade, the Farmer’s Market, paddle boarding on Shem Creek, or the Charleston Bridge Run, Coleman Boulevard features prominently in the minds of both visitors to the town and its natives. The adjacent neighborhoods are a major part of this nexus, and the it’s evolution over the years along Coleman has had it’s ups and downs like any other town. Since the completion of the Ravenel Bridge, there has been a lot of new development on Coleman but it’s adjacent, established neighborhoods still anchor this vibrant community center in place.
Coleman Boulevard Neighborhoods
There are several neighborhoods that border Coleman Boulevard and the largest and oldest and largest is called Old Village. The Town of Mount of Pleasant actually originated from five classic English villages that had been settled around Shem Creek harbor beginning with “Greenwich Village” in 1766. Many of the other neighborhoods like The Groves and Cooper Estates evolved in the second half of the 19th century.
Currently On the Market Near Coleman Boulevard
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The town has focused on the area’s potential for years but never made much progress in moving forward with any substantial improvements to the area. Much of the area had a small town rustic charm. In 2008, the Town of Mount Pleasant announced a plan to make a serious commitment to revitalizing Coleman Boulevard so that it might have more of a main street feel. At the time, there wasn’t any controversy. Very little was said back then about the new standard for the height of buildings in the corridor. That changed when a groundswell of resistance formed as a high density residential project called The Boulevard was being constructed. This large infill project is taller than any other previously built, and the quality of design and siting of the Beach Company’s structure within a few feet Coleman immediately drew intense criticism. This high-density development’s massing and height caught many residents off guard and proposals to build similar projects along this corridor have more recently been met with derision and focused opposition. One of the next projects to move forward was an office building and garage proposed by a Texas developer named Tex Small. It’s location near Shem Creek caused some feathers to be ruffled and the NIMBY forces that we’re stirred by the Boulevard project have stimulated action in the form of a grassroots movement led by the Save Shem Creek organization which was formed as a legal challenge to the Town of Mount Pleasant and Tex Small’s building proposal. The office building and garage moved forward with construction on November 5.
Needless to say, the town has been doing a dance between the forces of growth and conservation. The town has pushed forward though with other changes, especially to make it’s crown jewel, Shem Creek, a focal point and destination. It invested heavily to provide better access to the water, creating a park adjacent to the existing boardwalk structure. Plans call for the boardwalk to be opened up the entire way from Coleman Boulevard to the existing park’s walkway.