It's late summer at the beach and the vacationers are starting to dwindle, but the real estate market is busy! And While inventory for homes under $500K continues to be weak, condo sales have strengthened and more high end properties are coming on the market. I've included some statistics & insights regarding the state of the market in 'July, In Review' found in my newsletter below.
In the local news...
Have you heard? Charleston has topped the charts again! Travel and Leisure recently conducted their annual 'World's Best Awards' and Charleston was honored "The #1 City in North American and Canada" and "The #2 City in the World"!
Folly's Mid Block Beach Walk- Overs
A local beach resident has donated his time and money to open up the mid block rights of way in the first block east, from the ocean to the river. Opening the mid block beach accesses has been a slow project for The City. The Planning commission identified 101 mid- block paths two years ago and about 30% were already in use. Last year, West 3rd mid- blocks were opened This year, East 6th and 7th are now being cleared. The City budgets only $7000 a year for the project. However, most of the budget goes to surveying, signage, and painting crosswalks.
City working to Identify Sand Sources for Future Renourishment Projects
The City is currently working with the Army Corps of Engineers to identify new sand for future beach renourishments. We do this for 2 reasons: it's needed for our next total beach renourishment project and is also necessary in being proactive in case of destructive storms.
Folly Beach Pelicans
Residents and beach lovers alike are thrilled that the previously endangered Pelicans are back in large numbers. As many as 100 birds may be seen flying in line down our beachfront. This is worth celebrating since the birds had a period of sharp decline after Hurricane Hugo. Progress is attributed to an unusual and controversial plan enacted by the County Parks Commission in which a groin was built into the ocean at the end of the west end park to hold sand. The project was approved through an agreement with The Coastal Conservation League to tear down the groin if further destruction of habitats occurred. The sand has really built up at Bird Key/ Skimmer Flats and is providing a terrific spot for the Pelicans, terns, as well as all kinds of shore birds. For now, studies show the project is a success and everyone is happy. In fact, the County won a national award for the project. An added bonus is the County Park sand is providing great sand for beach goers!
Sea Turtle Summer
It's a great year for wildlife on Folly. Not only are the Pelicans back, the numbers for Sea Turtles in the State and Region have nearly quadrupled over 2014! 2015 has been the best nesting season for sea turtles in 20 years- and the season isn't over, yet. For more info on local turtles go to www.follyturtles.com. For info on protecting sea Turtles and future generations, go to DNR Turtle Nests.
New Online Payment System for Sewer/ Water
Folly sewer and water bills can now be paid online! Go to https://cityoffollybeach.mygovhub.com to create an account. You will need your sewer/ water account #'s. There is a $3.50 service charge per transaction and a transaction is limited to $400 or less.
Folly Beach boasts a Charleston County pilot project to collect recycling every week in the summer in order to collect the extra recycling generated by summer rentals, beach visitors, and events concentrated there. This project ends with the September 14th collection and recycling will thereafter be collected every other Monday. This has been a great help at the beach!
Center Street Design Update
The City is giving Center Street a facelift and is optimistic that changes will take place prior to summer 2016! The Planning Commission has been meeting twice a month to work on the plan. There is a meeting August 18th and the public is encouraged to participate. To see the full set of recommendations from the Center Street Task Force, check out these Power Point slides: Center Street Task Force Recommendations.
Center Street Brick Fundraiser- It's not too late to purchase a brick!
Want to leave your mark on Folly and help raise money for Center Street at the same time? Consider buying engraved bricks to honor your family and friends. The bricks will be laid in the newly-landscaped median between Ashley and Arctic and then along Center Street from City Hall to the Community Center. Bricks come in two sizes: 4×8 ($75) and 8×8 ($150). For more information and to purchase your brick, please visit the online purchase page: www.bricksrus.com/order/follybeachcenterstreet
I hope you enjoy this month’s Folly Beach Living Newsletter and as always, I'd love to hear your thoughts.