For years synonymous with crime, blight, and sprawl, North Charleston—actually a separate municipality—was for the longest time considered a necessary evil by most Charlestonians, who generally ventured there only to shop at a mall or see a show at its concert venue, the Coliseum. But as the cost of real estate continues to rise on the peninsula in Charleston proper, more and more artists and young professionals are choosing to live here.
Make no mistake, North Charleston still has its share of crime and squalor, but some of the most exciting things going on in the metro area are taking place right here. While many insisted that the closing of the U.S. Navy Yard in the 1990s would be the economic death of the whole city, the free market stepped in and is transforming the former military facility into a hip, mixed-use shopping and residential area. This is also where to go if you want to see the raised submarine CSS Hunley, now in a research area on the grounds of the old Navy Yard.
In short, North Charleston offers a lot for the more adventurous traveler and will no doubt only become more and more important to the local tourist industry as the years go by. And as they’re fond of pointing out up here, there aren’t any parking meters.
© Jim Morekis from Moon Charleston & Savannah, 4th Edition