Upper King Street Rental Rates on the Rise


sales up graphSharon Graci, co-founder of Pure Theatre, said she worries about affording rent for her 5,000-square-foot space at 477 King St. in downtown Charleston.

“There’s this feeling that all of us will be priced out,” Graci said. “What’s going to be the next business to fall victim to the fact that they could no longer afford to hang on here? We all love being here, and we all wonder how long we can hold on.”

Small businesses along Upper King Street are feeling the pressures of rising commercial rents that often accompany urban redevelopment efforts. The area near Spring Street shows the juxtaposition of a King Street of the past with its potential future — vacant buildings, scattered retail spaces and empty lots surround Midtown, the new, modern, mixed-use development that includes commercial space, a hotel and luxury apartments.

Restaurants and bars populate many of Upper King’s storefronts, with retail sprinkled throughout. PeopleMatter and the Charleston School of Law occupy office space there. Hotels are being built on both ends, and Evening Post Industries, The Post and Courier’s parent company, plans to redevelop about 12 acres near the Crosstown Expressway.


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