Auto body shopin Charleston, SC

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The Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration Difference

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

One of the unfortunate realities about driving and owning cars in the Lowcountry is that you will probably have to deal with some form of body damage at some point. Whether your driver-side door gets dinged in a parking lot or you back into a light pole, accidents happen. The good news? Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration is here to help with all of your body shop needs.

Unlike many fly-by-night collision repair companies, our auto body shop in cityname, state has served hardworking people for years. We make it a point to only employ the most experienced, highly-trained auto body technicians available, so you have peace of mind that we'll get the job done right. In fact, our mechanics have more than 60 years of combined experience. There is no collision repair job that we haven't handled - from minor bumps and scratches to complex repairs stemming from multi-car accidents.

At Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration, we are committed to providing our customers with the highest-quality body shop services at the most reasonable prices in town. We believe that everyone deserves to have their car or truck repaired when they need it the most. After all, our vehicles are crucial to daily life. We need them to live, work and play. We use them for just about every activity we enjoy, from taking the kids to soccer practice to hitting the gym on a Saturday morning. That's why we work with just about every car insurance company out there to ensure that our loyal customers have access to the best collision repair in South Carolina.

Customers choose Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration because they know we strive to exceed their expectations. At the end of the day, we want to do right by our customers with reliable body shop services, high-quality repair work, and helpful customer service. But that's not all. Our clients enjoy peace of mind with their collision repairs because we:

auto body shop Services

SERVICE AREAS

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Provide Free Estimates: Drop by our shop or call our office to learn more about our free estimates. Once we understand the scope of your restoration needs, our team will get to work.

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Offer 100% Guarantee: We have become a staple in our community because we guarantee our work 100%. If we missed the mark, made a mistake, or you're unhappy with our service, let us know. We'll make it right.

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Specialize in Full-Service Repairs: Our collision mechanics make repairs on all vehicle makes and models, so you don't have to worry about whether we can service your car. As a full-service collision repair company in South Carolina, we help every step of the way, from the moment we meet until you leave our parking lot.

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Love to Paint: Yes, you read that right. At Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration, we have a team of incredibly talented car painters to supplement our collision services. We offer various auto painting services, from minor paint jobs to full-scale custom paint projects.

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Accept Car Insurance: As daily drivers and locals in South Carolina, we know that collision repairs can be pricey. Despite the cost, they are necessary for daily life. That's why we're happy to work with car insurance companies, so you can go where you need to go without stressing about safety.

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Work Hard for You: At Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration, we try to keep it simple. You can rest easy knowing that there's no fine print, sleazy sales tactics, or lazy mechanics to worry about. When you pull into our parking lot, know that we prioritize good old-fashioned hard work and reliable service. No if's, and's, or but's.

Your First Choice for Collision
Repair in Charleston, SC

According to recent statistics from the South Carolina Department of Public Safety, a new traffic accident happens every 3.7 minutes in South Carolina. That's a lot of car accidents in a short amount of time. Being involved in a car accident can be a traumatic experience, filled with complex insurance claims and complicated auto body repairs. At Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration, we know how stressful it can be to have your care restored to its pre-collision beauty. That's why we offer comprehensive, streamlined auto body services and unsurpassed car restoration quality.

With more than 60 years of combined body shop experience in South Carolina, our repair techs leave no stones unturned and never take shortcuts when repairing your vehicle. We're proud to say we only use the latest diagnostic techniques, equipment, and parts to get the job done right. That way, you can get back on the road quickly and safely.

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

A few of our most common auto body shop services include but are not limited to:

Frame Repair in Charleston

Studies show that about 50 percent of vehicles suffer some kind of frame damage in a car collision. Frame damage can occur easily, even in common situations involving minor fender benders. Often, frame damage is difficult to see and can go unnoticed by insurance adjusters. The unfortunate truth is that even minor frame damage can put you, your family, your friends, and your car at risk when driving. When it goes unnoticed, it can often spell disaster for everyday drivers who might think their car is fine to drive.

When your car's frame is bent, your alignment is usually off, too, causing you to swerve and veer while driving. At best, this scenario results in unnecessary wear on your tires and, at worst, results in a car wreck. The bottom line? You need to get your car's frame inspected by a team of professional collision repair experts, even if you've only been involved in a minor accident.

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

At Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration, we take a comprehensive approach to frame repair and alignment. Our highly-trained frame repair technicians use a multi-point process to diagnose and correct your frame problems by:

  • Inspecting your car and its frame visually to discover any denting or bending.
  • Our alignment machine uses hydraulics and torque to strengthen your car's frame back to factory specs.
  • If our technicians spot damage, we'll begin the restoration process by placing your car on our frame alignment machine.
  • Once your frame is fixed, we'll answer any of your questions and will send you back on the road with a safe-to-drive vehicle.

Your First Choice for Collision Repair in Charleston, SC

Chips and cracks are bad news for your car's windshield and don't just look bad - they can do serious damage when left unrepaired. Cracks and chips can quickly turn from a minor inconvenience to a safety hazard by impairing your vision. If your windshield crack is bad enough, you might even get pulled over by a police officer. Driving your vehicle with a large crack or even with an object embedded in it is a bad idea, but Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration is here to help.

Our windshield repair technicians have years of experience repairing car windows and windshields for many types of automobile glass, including side and rear windows. If you have been involved in a collision and need new glass, we can help facilitate that process and install a new windshield without you ever lifting a finger. New glass is usually needed with serious car wrecks, and it's always best to trust a professional auto body shop in cityname, state to get the job done. Our team uses the most modern glass and adhesives on the market, so you know your windshield and windows are high-quality and ready for the road.

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Whether you have a chipped windshield or need all-new glass for your car, we're here to serve you.
Out car windshield and glass repairs include:

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Door Glass

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Vent Glass

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Quarter Glass

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Back Glass

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Windshield Glass

Paintless Dent Removal in Charleston

Any kind of item or stray piece of debris can dent your car. If you've been driving for at least a few years, chances are you've parked at a grocery store and, after shopping, returned to your car to see a big, unsightly dent. Whether they're due to inclement weather or rocks on the highway, dents cause noticeable damage that only gets worse with time. One of the most common dent repair solutions is paintless dent removal - a process that removes dents in your vehicle without removing any paint.

Paintless dent removal is great because it is not invasive and is a very efficient, cost-effective way to fix car dents before they get even worse. There are no fillers or sanding involved, making this option one of the quickest ways to remove dents. At Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration, our dent removal technicians use several tools to gently massage dents out of your car. When we're done, we'll smooth everything back into place, leaving your car looking like new.

To make matters even better, most paintless dent removal is supported by car insurance agencies, meaning you may not pay a cent out of pocket for our dent removal services.

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Classic Car Restoration
in Charleston

At Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration, we are very passionate about classic car restoration and offer a wide range of restoration services in Charleston. We understand that no two classic car restoration projects are the same, which is why we offer a wide variety of services. We're talking mechanical upgrades, partial restorations, and full car restoration projects. If you have a repair, upgrade, or restoration plan in mind, chances are we can help you achieve your goals.

After we perform an initial inspection and provide you with a detailed estimate on the scope of work needed to restore your car, our seasoned technicians will get to work on your project.

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Our full-scale classic car restoration process includes:

Auto Body Work Overhaul

Painting

Mechanical Repairs

Repair Interior

Custom Auto Body Painting in Charleston

When was the last time you got compliments on your car's paint? If you loved your car's paint when it was brand new but hate what it looks like now, Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration can help you fall back in love with your vehicle. Whether your current paint job looks old and faded or you're craving a new color to show off, our paint technicians can deliver what you're looking for.

Between our advanced painting tools and uber-talented vehicle painting experts, our team can transform your car's aesthetic appeal, no matter the make and model. We can even fix dings and scratches in your paint while we're at it, so your car is shiny, smooth, and ready to turn heads.

We offer various auto painting services, from minor paint jobs to full-scale custom projects. We're happy to work with budgets of all sizes and can accommodate all of your painting needs, whether you want to paint a daily driver or a show car.

We recommend you call our office today, so we can get to know you a little better and understand what kind of paint job your car needs. We're happy to chat about cars and your paint job, even if you're just inquiring. After all, we're more than the best body shop in Charleston - we're enthusiasts, too.

Auto Body Shop Charleston, SC

Your First Choice for Collison
Repair in Charleston, SC

If you're on the hunt for the highest-quality auto body repair services in South Carolina, backed by decades of experience, look no further than Lowcountry Paint Body & Restoration. We put our customer's needs first and strive to exceed expectations with every service we offer - all at a price you can afford. Swing by our body shop or contact our office today to discover why we're the Lowcountry's first choice in collision repair.

Troop-Films-LLC-phone-number(843) 996-4995

Free Estimates

Latest News in Charleston, SC

National retailer REI to open 3rd SC location

Specialty outdoor retailer REI Co-op has announced plans to open its third South Carolina location.The new store is expected to open in Mount Pleasant this fall, according to an REI news release. It will employ about 50 full- and part-time employees, a company representative told SC Biz News.The company declined to reveal the cost of the project.The 21,500-square-foot store, to be located 1720 Shoremeade Road in Indigo Sq...

Specialty outdoor retailer REI Co-op has announced plans to open its third South Carolina location.

The new store is expected to open in Mount Pleasant this fall, according to an REI news release. It will employ about 50 full- and part-time employees, a company representative told SC Biz News.

The company declined to reveal the cost of the project.

The 21,500-square-foot store, to be located 1720 Shoremeade Road in Indigo Square, will offer an assortment of apparel, gear and expertise for camping, cycling, running, fitness, hiking, paddling, climbing and more, the release stated.

The location will also feature a full-service bike shop that will be staffed by certified mechanics.

“We look forward to opening a third store in South Carolina and being a resource to REI members and the broader outdoor community in and around Mount Pleasant,” Jacki Harp, REI regional director, said in the release. “Our local team will also seek partnerships with outdoor nonprofits to support their efforts in protecting natural places and welcoming more people outside.”

REI, which is headquartered in Seattle, also has locations in Columbia (2300 Bull St.), which opened in 2020, and Greenville (1140 Woodruff Road, Suite 400), which opened in 2011.

REI was the first national retailer lured to the 181-acre, mixed-use BullStreet District development in 2019. Since its August 2020 opening, it has been joined by a Starbucks at the intersection of Bull and Freed streets, and several other commercial and residential real estate projects have sprung up around it.

Employment information is available online at rei.jobs.

REI, the nation’s largest consumer co-op, has more than 167,000 members in South Carolina, and more than 28,000 members in the region, according to the release.

Last year, the co-op invested $7.1 million in 45-plus nonprofits across the country, the release stated. Over the last five years, the co-op has invested nearly $184,000 in South Carolina-based land agencies and nonprofit partners. Recent recipients include Anne Springs Close Greenway, Conestee Foundation Inc., Friends of Harbison State Forest, Friends of Paris Mountain, Friends of Sesqui and Palmetto Conservation Foundation.

Also last year, the co-op launched the REI Cooperative Action Fund, a community-supported public charity. Black Girls RUN! Foundation chapters in Charleston, Columbia, Florence/Myrtle Beach and Greenville/Spartanburg received grants in the first round of funding.

Restoring vision by recharging cells' batteries

In May, an interdisciplinary MUSC research team won an inaugural Blue Sky Award, which provided $100,000 in funding for its project to restore vision in patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by recharging the eye cells’ batteries. The Blue Sky Award was created to encourage high-risk, high-reward research that has the potential to make a profound impact on patient care but is unlikely to attract traditional funding due to the difficulties of the projects.The team is led by ...

In May, an interdisciplinary MUSC research team won an inaugural Blue Sky Award, which provided $100,000 in funding for its project to restore vision in patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by recharging the eye cells’ batteries. The Blue Sky Award was created to encourage high-risk, high-reward research that has the potential to make a profound impact on patient care but is unlikely to attract traditional funding due to the difficulties of the projects.

The team is led by Baerbel Rohrer, Ph.D., of the College of Medicine, and Andrew Jakymiw, Ph.D., of the College of Dental Medicine, and included their graduate students Kyrie Wilson and Charles Holjencin. Rohrer is the Endowed Chair of Gene and Pharmaceutical Treatment of Retinal Degenerative Disease. Jakymiw is an expert in developing cell-penetrating peptides for drug delivery.

Together, they intend to tackle a disease that affects more than 10 million Americans: AMD. The disease causes vision to worsen slowly and eventually leads to blindness. Current therapies are inadequate, as they can only lessen the symptoms and aim, at best, to postpone the loss of vision. Existing therapies also require patients to return again and again for treatment.

Team members weren’t satisfied with just slowing down the disease. They wanted to develop a curative therapy that could protect and even restore vision.

“We knew that if we could treat the disease at the root cause, and not just the symptoms, that would be a huge step forward in regenerative medicine,” said Wilson.

At its root, AMD is caused by an insufficient supply of energy to eye cells.

“Every single activity of a cell requires energy,” said Rohrer. “Once you lose that energy, you will lose proper function of the cells. That will eventually lead to disease and vision loss.”

Mitochondria are the batteries that supply energy to cells, and they have their own DNA – mitochondrial DNA or mtDNA – to help them to do that. When their DNA becomes damaged, mitochondria cease to function properly and cannot provide cells with the energy they need.

Over time or because of stress, errors can be introduced into mtDNA as it copies itself. Rohrer likens the process to the game of “telephone.” In the game, a person whispers a word into the ear of another person. That person then whispers the word into the ear of the next person and so on down the line.

“Whatever ends up after five people is probably not the word that you picked to start with,” said Rohrer. “And it’s pretty much the same thing with copying mtDNA.”

Instead of trying to target and fix many copy errors, Rohrer and Wilson wondered whether a better approach would be to prevent the mistakes in the first place. They could do so by providing the mitochondria a new blueprint, or template, for copying their DNA, essentially “resetting” the word in the telephone game.

“You need a new template,” said Wilson. “You need to go back and have the perfect words again and know what you’re trying to say.”

Rohrer and Wilson realized that they would need a vehicle to deliver the template to the mitochondria. It would have to be able to dodge the body’s immune system and be accepted by the mitochondria. They reached out to Jakymiw, who had expertise with small nucleic acid-based drug delivery.

“We had actually never delivered anything that large to that point,” said Jakymiw. “I mean we’re talking about like 16 kilobases, which is a pretty big molecule.”

Although the two laboratories had had initial discussions, it was the announcement of the Blue Sky Award that solidified the collaboration and jump started the project.

“Some outcomes of the preliminary work that has evolved over the last few months suggest that we can potentially deliver this large amount of DNA and target it efficiently enough to restore vision for individuals affected by AMD,” continued Jakymiw.

Jakymiw and Holjencin decorate the surface of the mtDNA with small proteins that carry instructions for the cells and mitochondria on how to take up this newly formed nanoparticle.

“Essentially, we have a delivery mechanism that carries its own instructions for cell delivery,” said Holjencin, who is creating the nanoparticles being used in the project.

“You can also design the small proteins so that they can recognize a particular ‘zip code’ and deliver the cargo to that particular site within the cell,” said Jakymiw.

These small proteins also provide a potential “invisibility cloak” to protect the nanoparticles from the body’s immune system.

To date, the team has shown that the small proteins can package the mtDNA within nanoparticles and deploy it to the struggling mitochondria. They have also shown that it persists there for at least four weeks. In previous studies, mtDNA disappeared after just 48 hours.

“We will eventually end up looking for the presence of mtDNA at probably eight weeks, maybe even out to 16 weeks,” said Wilson.

“And obviously what we would want for humans is that that this translates into many years as opposed to having to repeat these treatments on a regular basis,” said Rohrer.

The hope is that introducing the template would set off a series of events that could lead to restored vision. The mitochondria might share the template with its neighbors, which could, likewise, pass it on. As the quality of mtDNA improves in more and more mitochondria, they could again supply sufficient energy to eye cells, restoring vision.

“This new approach is like a quantum leap. If this were to work, it would just significantly change not just the trajectory of my lab but the trajectory of treatment for AMD,” said Rohrer.

The collaborative biorepository project between MUSC and SCSU is expanding with the hopes of reaching more medically underserved communities.

Victim alleges years of harassment, by North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A longtime City of North Charleston employee is accusing North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey of inappropriate sexual advances both before and during her time working for the city.DeLisa Reynolds and Keith Summey have known each other for decades. In the late 1990’s DeLisa and her husband at the time, along with Keith, and his wife, Deb...

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A longtime City of North Charleston employee is accusing North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey of inappropriate sexual advances both before and during her time working for the city.

DeLisa Reynolds and Keith Summey have known each other for decades. In the late 1990’s DeLisa and her husband at the time, along with Keith, and his wife, Deborah, owned a post office together on E. Montague Avenue in North Charleston.

“So, the four of us renovated, we did work, we ran businesses, we opened a post office,” said Reynolds. “I took that service on.”

Being self-employed, Reynolds said she was concerned about her lack of health insurance. That’s when the Summeys offered her a part-time job working as a receptionist for the City of North Charleston in 2001.

At that time, Summey had been mayor for around seven years.

“I started about 21 years ago and have been there ever since,” said Reynolds.

Throughout her time working for the city, Reynolds moved up the ranks from a part-time receptionist to a secretary a year later, then to an administrative assistant in 2006, a special events coordinator in 2016, and earlier this year she became archives and history coordinator.

Reynolds says the sexual advances by Mayor Summey started before Reynolds began working at the city. She says they began at the post office the Reynolds and Summeys owned together.

“I was at the post office working and he came in. And I went into the closet and he followed me. and that’s where it all began. It was groping. and kissing me,” said Reynolds.

She approximates the time frame of that was in the summer of 1999.

“How many times? I can’t tell you…I can’t tell you that. I don’t….it was so many.”

She said things progressed over the following years and never completely stopped and Summey would still make comments.

“Up until November, this past November it was ‘Hey, let me get a kiss.'”

Reynolds says she was never comfortable reporting the alleged harassment out of fear of retaliation.

“No. I didn’t have anyone to report that to. At that time it was a man’s world. HR was a man director that was very close with the people in the executive department. So I didn’t think I was safe enough to say that or would I lose my job for saying that to HR? I didn’t want my family to know what was going on. I didn’t want my children to know, my husband. So, I just kept it.”

Reynolds considered leaving her job but was concerned about finding the same amount of money and a job she liked as much as her city job.

Reynolds says she started noticing what she describes as an “abuse of power” by Mayor Summey and other executive staffers at the city.

“I don’t know that I’ve ever really noticed so much of it until it actually happened to me directly,” said Reynolds. “Because I was dedicated to the city and the mayor. My goal always was to make sure my job reflected on him as me doing a good job for the city. It was to make him and the city look good.”

During her time working in the executive department, Reynolds says things would stick out to her.

“You notice promotions and things going on and people that were getting more than what others weren’t getting for doing double the work. Other people were coming in because they were friends or whatever. Granted, I was a friend of the mayor as well and the family. So I felt ‘well, they’re protecting me by offering me a position.'”

She says she really started to notice the “abuse of power” when she saw other women becoming involved.

“Just by the way they would disappear together,” said Reynolds. “But I didn’t give it a whole lot of thought.”

Reynolds’ job was switched and she began working at Riverfront Park, something she did not enjoy at first because she felt isolated.

“Maybe that’s because I was starting to see things a little bit differently,” said Reynolds.

Reynolds never planned on coming forward with the allegations. She tells News 2 she planned to stop working for the city at the end of Mayor Summey’s current term which ends in 2023.

“I had already started making a 2.5-year plan. That when the mayor left, I would go too. And I would go silently. And they wouldn’t let me finish out my tenure that way.”

Last October, Reynolds’ adult son made a negative comment on social media about Elliot Summey, Mayor Summey’s son.

Reynolds believes the actions of her son had a direct impact on her, even though she told the Summey family that those were her son’s beliefs and words and did not reflect her own.

“I took a direct hit. My workload got different, I did things that I should not have had to do as a salaried employee, I put in a lot of extra hours that I should not have to do,” said Reynolds. “When they stopped talking to me back in October, things were building and building and I was being scrutinized with everything I did.”

Fast forward to the beginning of 2022, Reynolds was removed from her role of being a Special Event Coordinator at Riverfront Park and given a new role.

“They created this position so they could remove me from what I had worked so hard for.”

Reynolds’ new title is Archives and History Coordinator. A job she says she’s not qualified for nor did she want or ask for.

“They were forcing me out of my position and creating a position I technically do not have the knowledge to do.”

Then, in February 2022, Reynolds filed a formal complaint to the city detailing what she calls the abuse of power.

Reynolds says because of this recent situation, she is upset and frustrated and has changed the way she is thinking about her future.

That’s why she decided to come forward with these allegations of inappropriate sexual conduct and abuse of power.

“I started to rethink…this is not the life I want to live.”

A press release sent to News 2 by the lawyers of Reynolds says if a formal investigation is not made into the allegations, Reynolds will take legal action.

The City of North Charleston responded with the following statement on Sunday. They declined a request for comment on Monday.

“On January 14, 2022, Ms. Reynolds was notified of a lateral move to Archives and History Coordinator. This transfer did not negatively affect Ms. Reynolds’ pay or benefits with the city. Ms. Reynolds’ complaint was received shortly thereafter.

Employment History:Part-time receptionist – 2001Secretary – 2002 Administrative Assistant – 2006 Special Events Coordinator – 2016Archives and History Coordinator – 2022

Mayor Summey and the City deny the allegations raised by Ms. Reynolds’ lawyer and will not comment further on threatened or pending litigation.

City of North Charleston”

Reynolds is currently on leave from her job as part of the Family and Medical Leave Act due to medical issues. She was approved for leave on January 21st, 2022, was reevaluated on April 14th and her leave was extended until June 24th.

This is a developing story, check back for updates.

Lowcountry Land Trust begins planning phase for Angel Oak Preserve project

JOHNS ISLAND — A lot of effort went into saving the 35 acres surrounding the Angel Oak from development. Now, nearly a decade later, the Lowcountry Land Trust is ready to collect community input on what to do with the property.This week begins a schedule of opportunities for people to share how they’d like to see the wooded space around the iconic oak used. But the ultimate goal remains: that the planned Angel Oak Preserve be passive, publicly accessible green space complemented with trails, boardwalks and interpretive not...

JOHNS ISLAND — A lot of effort went into saving the 35 acres surrounding the Angel Oak from development. Now, nearly a decade later, the Lowcountry Land Trust is ready to collect community input on what to do with the property.

This week begins a schedule of opportunities for people to share how they’d like to see the wooded space around the iconic oak used. But the ultimate goal remains: that the planned Angel Oak Preserve be passive, publicly accessible green space complemented with trails, boardwalks and interpretive notes, and that the tree itself not be harmed.

The land trust will share a presentation on the tree’s history and the future preserve at 7 p.m. June 9, and again at 6:30 p.m. June 15, at the Johns Island Library. Public comments will be collected during the presentations.

This special tree holds deeply rooted history in the Lowcountry. It is named after the Angel family that once owned the land where it stands. The tree is estimated to be at least 300 years old, making it quite possibly one of the oldest trees of its kind east of the Mississippi River.

It’s also a behemoth. City surveys estimate the tree to be 65 feet tall with a circumference of 25.5 feet, shading an area of 17,000 square feet beneath the extensive canopy.

Based on the city’s most recent inspection, “the health of the Angel Oak could not be better,” said David Grant, Charleston’s park and tree administrator.

The area surrounding the Angel Oak is so special that community members rallied together to ensure not much changed there. In 2008, Charleston City Council approved plans for a densely built collection of shops, offices and multifamily homes near the Angel Oak Park at Maybank Highway and Bohicket Road.

But there were concerns about the impact this development would have on the tree.

So after collecting more than 12,000 donations, plus Charleston County Greenbelt and S.C. Conservation Bank funds, the Lowcountry Land Trust was able to buy the property for $7 million to save it from development. This is the space that will become Angel Oak Preserve.

“Putting this heavy development there would have impacted the root system, the hydrologic flows, the soils, everything that’s needed to be preserved for the health of this tree,” said Jason Crowley, Coastal Conservation League’s communities and transportation senior program director.

The 35 acres owned by the land trust is comprised of every soil necessary for an ancient live oak to thrive, Crowley said.

The Angel Oak’s significance as a community landmark goes back generations. Crowley said the late South Carolina educator-activist Septima Clark mentioned in interviews how she would often take breaks from teaching and sit underneath the tree, and even sometimes gather there with her students.

“Even though this was technically private property, it harkens back to the era of Johns Island and the Sea Islands themselves as this place where property boundaries were fluid in the sense of people could walk across private property in order to access things like waterways and a shady tree like this,” Crowley said.

The tree’s interests have become a cultural issue on Johns Island in recent years as some places that were once accessible to Gullah-Geechee residents for fishing, crabbing and launching boats are now being privatized.

Ashley Demosthenes, CEO and president of the Lowcountry Land Trust, said many locals believe the land around the tree is sacred and have expressed desires to explore the woods there.

“They want it to be a place for education for residents, visitors and the local schools,” Demosthenes said. “So that’s a huge opportunity that we see, that education component with students.”

Overall they want it to be a place open for walking, observing nature and enjoying picnics with family, Demosthenes said.

While the Angel Oak is obviously the main attraction in that part of Johns Island, the Lowcountry Land Trust wants to utilize its 35 acres to relieve some of the pressure on the tree.

So, essentially, the preserve will help distribute visitors across the entire property — not just at the 9-acre Angel Oak Park — using trails, boardwalks and interpretation woven throughout to explain the ecology and cultural significance of the area.

Since the city-owned park is a direct neighbor to the preserve, it makes sense for the two groups to partner in developing a vision and plan for the area, said Jason Kronsberg, director of parks for the city of Charleston.

He sits on the preserve’s steering committee with Crowley and people from several other groups, including The Avery Center, The Progressive Club and the Charleston Parks Conservancy.

Members of the community can share their desires for the preserve through an online survey at bit.ly/3xrCh2P. The land trust will have a table at the Sea Island Farmers Market from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. June 11 and June 25. There also will be an information table set up from 2 to 4 p.m. each Friday at Angel Oak Park.

Nelson Byrd Woltz Architects will lead the comprehensive planning process. The goal is to have a design completed in early 2023.

Editorial: North Charleston needs to change its election rules

A court likely will decide whether North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey’s past behavior toward a city employee crossed the legal line that separates sexual harassment from poor judgment, but whatever the outcome, the news reminds all of us that he won’t be mayor forever.Mr. Summey, 75, was widely expected not to seek reelection next year long before longtime staffer DeLisa Reynolds went public with claims that the mayor repeatedly made sexual advances toward her two decades ago and more recently attempted to punish her afte...

A court likely will decide whether North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey’s past behavior toward a city employee crossed the legal line that separates sexual harassment from poor judgment, but whatever the outcome, the news reminds all of us that he won’t be mayor forever.

Mr. Summey, 75, was widely expected not to seek reelection next year long before longtime staffer DeLisa Reynolds went public with claims that the mayor repeatedly made sexual advances toward her two decades ago and more recently attempted to punish her after one of her family members criticized the mayor’s son on social media. Regardless of who people believe most, the accusations are troubling. Even though Mr. Summey has acknowledged having a stripper strip in City Hall about 12 years ago was “a stupid thing” and says it “has never occurred again and won’t” (a tangential allegation Ms. Reynolds made to The Post and Courier’s Tony Bartelme), it’s safe to say some damage has been done, to him and the community.

For residents, business owners and others who care about North Charleston, this is a reminder that the city soon will be at a crossroads that will help determine its future.

After North Charleston voters go to the polls in November 2023, the city likely will have its first new mayor in more than a quarter of a century. The field of candidates is far from set — and Mr. Summey could surprise us and run yet again — but it’s not too soon for City Council to rectify an election format that we see as a potential land mine.

Under the current rules, the city’s next mayor could take office with as little as 30% of the vote, possibly even less. City Council should change the rules to require the next mayor to get at least 50% of the vote; such a change might mean a Nov. 7, 2023, election and a Nov. 21 runoff between the top two mayoral vote getters.

North Charleston is one of only a handful of cities in South Carolina — and the only large city — that declares a winner based on a simple plurality. The vast majority of cities and towns mirror South Carolina’s primary election laws, which call for a runoff if no one receives 50% of the vote plus one.

This unique feature frankly has gone largely unnoticed because of Mayor Summey’s political dominance over the years; he has had plenty of challengers but few if any close calls. But with a potentially crowded, Summey-less field next year, the odds are greater than ever that the next mayor of South Carolina’s third-largest city might get the job without any kind of mandate.

We believe now is the time for City Council to change the rules to require a runoff. Waiting longer, until the mayoral field starts to firm up, would reduce the chances of success because any change would be filtered more through the lens of which challenger might be helped or hurt.

Ideally, City Council also would change its election rules to stagger the election of its 10 council seats; currently, they all are up for grabs next year, too, but we believe the city would gain valuable stability and continuity if only five council seats were filled in any given election, with the other five elected two years later.

North Charleston is celebrating its 50th anniversary this week, and the milestone should remind us all how much the city has grown and changed in recent years — and how increasingly important it has become and will continue to be to our region’s economy, transportation network and overall quality of life.

This is nowhere near the same city that existed when Mayor Summey moved into City Hall in 1994, and he gets a good chunk of the credit for that.

City Council members should act now to ensure the city’s next mayor, whoever that may be, gets off on the best possible footing.

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