Between June and November, 2014 the City of Charleston and the Historic Charleston Foundation engaged Gabe Klein to study mobility options for the Peninsula. Klein is the former Director of Transportation for the Cities of Chicago and Washington D.C. He is an internationally recognized leader in issues related to urban mobility. Klein was asked to recommend a strategy for the Charleston peninsula.
Klein’s report is now available from the City Department of Planning, Preservation and Sustainability and the Historic Charleston Foundation. Gabe states “there are several actions which would help to maintain the character of Charleston: 1) creating more viable alternatives to driving, 2) Offering more ways for visitors to enter the historic districts by means other than the automobile, and 3) following a strategic parking plan that includes more remote parking and facilitates public transit.”
The report includes many recommendations related to mobility on the Peninsula, from small things that can be done quickly to bigger projects that will take a few years to develop. The report concentrates on further developing alternatives modes of transportation and specifically considering a trolley system on the Peninsula as the backbone of a dramatically improved public transit service. It also recommends a coordinated move to more remote parking locations with connections to the historic district via the trolley. Shorter term pilot projects to improve bike and pedestrian safety and comfort are also recommended.
This report concludes Klein’s current work in Charleston but it provides a strong series of next steps to address this pivotal issue. The City will continue this work in early 2015 by studying in more detail the feasibility of trolley service.