a connected, safe, accessible and equitable Charleston — where each of us has a choice in how we move from one place to another. We see strong, diverse neighborhoods where school children, folks in wheelchairs, and people with canes cross streets safely in their own time. We see streets lined with homes, bustling shops and restaurants. We see bridges and waterways where people on bicycles and on foot travel alongside buses and cars on their way to work, to the doctor, to the grocery store — freely and safely.
We see renewed life in our streets — a Charleston that’s ours to sculpt.
That’s why we speak out to councils, committees, agencies, and even the State House, advocating for sound policies. Why we push to flourish, not stagnate. Why we work with urban planners, engineers and citizen groups. Study, audit and document the dangers and issues of our intersections, corridors and bridges — and work to make them better, safer and more accessible. This is our determined, continuous commitment to remake systems and power enduring change.
Because the streets belong to everyone. Pedestrians and school kids. People on bicycles and people on buses. Citizens in wheelchairs and with canes. Moped and motorcycle drivers. All of us moving. Safely. Together.
In 1993, engaged citizens formed the Charleston Bicycle Advocacy Group (CBAG), which sought to elevate support for bicyclists in and around Charleston. The group campaigned for and successfully achieved bicycle lanes on Coleman Boulevard in Mount Pleasant, despite opposition from the Department of Transportation. CBAG lobbied successfully for bicycle racks on buses, for improved cycling access to the Isle of Palms and served on the regional transportation board, voting for sidewalk improvements (especially near schools) and miles of bike paths near county parks.
In the early 2000s, CBAG’s lobbying efforts for bike and pedestrian access on the newly-proposed Ravenel Bridge met fierce opposition from the South Carolina Department of Transportation, but it also attracted wide support from high-profile individuals and institutions. Building a groundswell of support for the additional lane, the final bridge plan included a 12-foot wide bicycle and pedestrian path. It also helped shift the focus for CBAG, which changed its name to Charleston Moves in 2005, in recognition of a broader mission: to promote active modes of transportation such as biking and walking, and taking the bus.
In 2009, Charleston Moves launched the Battery2Beach Route initiative, working with multiple government agencies on a vision of 32 miles of continuous bike and pedestrian lanes connecting major beaches in the Charleston area with the iconic Battery at the foot of the Charleston peninsula. Approximately 40% of the route is complete, with more segments in the works.
Charleston Moves hired its first paid full-time director in 2014, with a second paid staff member a year later. An ambitious annual calendar of local events seeks to help diversify the demographics of our organization and our advocates, and raise the bar in fundraising efforts.