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The goal of the Charleston Green Business Challenge is to improve the environmental performance and sustainability of our businesses. Save Money and Resource, Support Environmental Stewardship, and Get Recognized as a Sustainable Business Leader.

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Improved Transportation

Summary and Update

Between 1980 and 2005, the number of miles Americans drove grew three times faster than the population grew at the same time.  This trend is expected to continue into the near future, so that between 2005 and 2030, the number of miles driven is expected to grow 48% -- more than twice the population growth of 23%.  In the Charleston region, the rate of population growth and the increase in Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) is expected to align closely with the national trend. 

In order to reduce the associated traffic congestion, air pollution and noise that results from increased Vehicle Miles Traveled, the Charleston Green Plan makes the following recommendations to improve transportation:

  1. Reduce Dependence on Single Occupancy Vehicles
  2. Increase Convenient, Reliable Public Transportation
  3. Expand Bicycle and Pedestrian Options
  4. Increase Fuel Efficiency and Use of Biofuels
  5. Improve Air Quality



Strategies to promote alternatives to single occupancy vehicles include programs that reward employees for carpooling, walking, biking or using public transit; designing new “complete streets” that accommodate bicycles, pedestrians, public transit riders, and public transit vehicles and evaluating vehicle-free tourism areas in downtown Charleston.

The City of Charleston is already making good progress in the area of improved and expanded transportation. The City has expanded biking and walking routes, such as the bike lane on the Ravenel Bridge that continues onto East Bay Street, a bike and walking path along the Ashley River and extensions of the West Ashley Bikeway and Greenway, as well as installing new bike racks throughout the downtown commercial district. In May 2009, the City made a commitment to seek “Bicycle Friendly Community” status from the League of American Bicyclists.  This will mean creating a more complete network of bike routes, restriping appropriate streets and expanding efforts to promote bicycling. Additionally, the plan recommends strategically locating bus stops for multi-modal access, working to improve bus stop safety, improving bus stop seating and expanding bilingual services.

In partnership with state and local agencies, the plan recommends that the City help increase fuel efficiency and the use of cleaner fuels by setting high standards for the purchase, use, and maintenance of fuel efficient City vehicles and the CARTA fleet, continuously working to improve traffic flow, enforcing anti-idling programs and enforcing speed limits.  Specifically the plan urges the City to identify opportunities to participate in the decision making process for policy and actions related to the Port of Charleston and local industries that have a significant impact on fuel efficiency, cleaner fuel and air quality.

To read the detailed recommendations for the Improved Transportation Section of the Charleston Green Plan, click here.

If you would like to get involved with the Transportation Subcommittee, please contact Jenny Humphreys at jhumphreys@wilbursmith.com


» List of Transportation Measures

» City of Charleston Transportation Planning Methods and Activities

» Transportation Recommendations 10_17_08

» EPA Grant Fact Sheet

» Ravenel Bridge Study

» Transit Fleet & Biodiesel

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