Old Baker Hospital Site

[March 26, 2024 / Updated April 19, 2024]

» Sign the petition HERE

As part of our outreach efforts for the Better North Bridge project, we learned from community members in North Charleston about the lack of access to green and blue spaces. A lot of people shared with us that their quality of life could improve with nearby park space. And we met neighbors who walk the existing and deadly North Bridge for public water access, which is currently only available on the West Ashley side.

Investment in communities is necessary to provide freedom to thrive. And much of that investment should be in accessibility, in open space, and in comfort. When we live in a place where safety and quality of life is clearly valued by decision makers, we contribute our best back to the community.

We would very much like to see the old Baker Hospital site (donated to Charleston County about a decade ago) be a park that is safely connected by bicycle and foot to the Better North Bridge, the future Azalea Trail, Lowcountry Rapid Transit, and the Lowcountry Lowline. And we want it to be a space that aligns with what the nearby neighborhoods desire.

For those unfamiliar with this site, it’s located along the Ashley River, just off Azalea Drive and south of the existing North Bridge. It is surrounded by numerous neighborhoods, and near schools and businesses. The City’s Comprehensive Plan, passed in 2020 after input from thousands of participants, identifies the site for mixed use, which means no heavy industrial, and instead compact, walkable development with open space and services for nearby residents.

The City of North Charleston Planning Commission recently recommended denial of a rezoning request for portions of the site to go from residential to heavy and light industrial, in order to accommodate a boat manufacturing facility. On April 11, North Charleston City Council gave first reading to the rezoning request. On April 18, North Charleston Council’s Public Safety Committee deferred taking action for 30 days, but still held a public hearing. The community overwhelmingly spoke against the rezoning. Please mark your calendars for the next meeting, which will be May 16. We need as many people as possible to attend. And if you are unavailable, please make sure you have signed the petition started by a concerned neighbor HERE

The old Baker Hospital site is a wonderful opportunity for the community to come together and make the park serve the community the best it can! It needs remediation, a design that reflects the community’s wishes, and safe multi-modal connectivity. And it must be free to access.

Let’s work together for a world-class park and gateway to North Charleston. 

You can also get more details on the issue from Live 5 News.