Georgetown Deteriorated Buildings StrategY
Georgetown, South Carolina (2018)
Georgetown is a small historic coastal town founded in 1734 north of Charleston. It has a National Register and local historic district that extends from the waterfront and includes a 36-block area. There are historic but economically-disadvantaged neighborhoods surrounding the downtown. The Walker Collaborative (TWC) was hired as a sub-consultant to Thomason & Associates, who rewrote the City’s existing historic district design guidelines as the primary component of this project. A separate but parallel part of the project that was led by TWC was the creation of a strategy to rehabilitate numerous deteriorating historic buildings both within the historic waterfront district and the outlying neighborhoods. Key recommendations included: 1) address the heirs property issue through funding via federal housing programs and through the support of groups such as the Center for Heirs Property Preservation; 2) improve local lending through lender and borrower “match making” events; 3) revise various local regulations as explained in the report; and 4) adopt a package of property tax policies as specified in the report.