SC Ports agency says no to alternate cruise terminal site

The Associated Press: May 13, 2015

Although city planners wanted another site, the South Carolina Ports Authority says it has no plans to consider a new location for a planned $35 million cruise terminal in downtown Charleston.

Last month the city planning commission voted 8-1 in favor of a new city tourism management plan with a provision that a new site for the terminal be found farther from the city’s historic district.

But the Post and Courier of Charleston reports ( that Charleston City Council approved the plan Tuesday without recommending another location.

Opponents of the proposed terminal in an old waterfront warehouse say the location will mean too much congestion and too much pollution in the historic district. They suggested another site at a ports terminal farther up the river.

But authority CEO Jim Newsome says there is no room for a cruise ship terminal there and the terminal must be kept for freight.

He says that’s especially important after Volvo announced this week it will build its first U.S. plan in neighboring Berkeley County, in large part because of access to the state’s ports.

It’s been almost five years since the Ports Authority announced plans for a new terminal. Permit approvals have been tied up in court for years.

Charleston Mayor Joe Riley has said the council approved plans four years ago for the new terminal and it will mean traffic will flow more smoothly than at the existing aging terminal which is decades old.


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