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The transformation of the former Cainhoy Plantation property into the city of Charleston’s largest planned unit development is well underway. In fact, this year the 9,000-acre parcel in the heart of the Cainhoy peninsula will see its first residential neighborhood take shape. Already, new roadways and street signs have been put into place where new homes will soon pop up, as well as two new playground areas.


According to Carolyn Lancaster, vice president of marketing for the DI Development Company, the entity managing development of the parcel, the property’s initial community will be known as Point Hope.

“Located on the south side of Clements Ferry Road, Point Hope is being planned as a mixed-use community with new homes, nature and exercise trails, bikeways and parks, and shopping and conveniences,” noted Lancaster.

A shopping center, anchored by Publix, is already open with a number of spaces leased and more in the pipeline. Trails and a network of parks are also in the works. In addition, residents have begun moving into Paxton Point Hope, a new 312-unit apartment complex located next to the shopping center.

The emerging community is also home to three Berkeley County public schools serving students in grades K-12. Known as the Philip Simmons schools, the campuses have been up and running for several years.

The first neighborhood on the Cainhoy property will consist of about 60 home sites, said Lancaster, and is being developed adjacent to the schools. Construction is set to kick off later this spring. A community information center, currently being built near the entrance to the shopping center on Point Hope Parkway, will serve as a connection point for those interested in learning more about the emerging new enclave.

“Here, visitors and prospective buyers will be able to get an in-depth overview on the land’s rich history as well as its vision for the future,” said Lancaster. “The information center is expected to open in May and information about builders and homes will be available soon.”

The massive Cainhoy parcel, which extends from the Wando River across Clements Ferry Road to the Cooper River, was passed down to Peter Lawson-Johnston in a lifetime trust in 1971 by his cousin, the late businessman and philanthropist Harry Frank Guggenheim. Lawson-Johnston and his family still hold the tract today through various entities.

The DI Development Company — the same team responsible for Daniel Island — is overseeing the property’s development on behalf of the family. Much of the property is still in permitting, said Lancaster. But, according to the development team’s comments in previous articles in The Daniel Island News, the company has undertaken proactive studies of wetlands, ecological, historical and cultural assets; engaged wildlife and habitat consultants; analyzed the potential impacts on natural resources; and cooperatively worked with the conservation community to create innovative mitigation plans that incorporate natural resources into the fabric of the community. Less than half of the property will be actively developed, Lancaster told the paper in 2017. The tract will include what has been dubbed “Point Hope Nature Sanctuary,” a 500-acre public open space that will allow the developer to mitigate for environmental impacts on site, instead of outside of the new community in other parts of the region.


Jacob Lindsey, director of planning, preservation and sustainability for the city of Charleston, said the Cainhoy property is “off to a good start.” The city first approved zoning for the property, and its master plan, in 2013. The massive parcel has some 18,000 “entitlements” — which means its zoning allows that number of “dwelling units,” noted Lindsey, but the developers have indicated to the city that they will likely construct half of that figure, perhaps 8,500 to 9,500 units.

“New developments will be subject to the most rigorous stormwater standards we have ever had before,” noted Lindsey.

All entities are aware that proper planning for what is to come on Cainhoy is essential. Similar to the Daniel Island community’s evolution, full build-out on the parcel is expected to be complete within 20 to 30 years. (Credit: Daniel Island News)

For more information on development on Cainhoy Plantation, please contact THE BRENNAMAN GROUP: 843.345.6074 – bob@charlestonproperty.net – www.BrennamanGroup.com