#CharlestonAgenda: Chamber Issues Economic Outlook, SPAWAR's New Name, Topgolf Opens, Cocktail Bandits, Making THC From YeastMar 01, 2019 08:52AM ● By Chris Haire
Charleston Metro Chamber's predicts moderate growth; housing attainability cited as key issue: The Charleston Metro Chamber released its 2019 Economic Forecast, which predicts continuing expansion, though at a more moderate pace than in recent years.
The annual forecast is a partnership project between the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce’s Center for Business Research and the College of Charleston’s School of Business. An Economic Outlook Board provides insight and information on future developments that goes beyond statistical models, with real-time insight into the local economy used in concert with a economic forecasting model.
“With the guidance of our Economic Outlook Board, we feel confident that the next two years will be vibrant for the Charleston Metro Area,” says Jacki Renegar, director of the Center for Business Research.
As the area population continues to grow by 38 people per day -- 28 moving to the area and 10 being born -- job gains are expected, particularly in production, hospitality, medical business operations, and information technology. The region’s military presence will remain strong, with 20,000 civilian and active-duty personnel. Among the biggest leaps will be the air passenger volume, which is expected to increase by 9.5 percent in 2019.
The report says the region does face some challenges, particularly a housing attainability crisis spurred by rising prices and added restrictions on building. Fewer than 7,000 new housing units were permitted across the metro area - -Charleston, Dorchester and Berkeley counties -- which isn’t enough to keep pace with the 7,500 units needed to accommodate steady population growth of 2.2 percent. Single-family permits are expected to decrease by 2.1 percent in 2019.
The Chamber is working to build partnerships with local governments to address the issue.
“Though our region has some challenges that come from a growing economy, the Charleston Metro Chamber and strategic partners are working together toward solutions that create a successful business climate and opportunities for all residents,” Renegar says. --Leigh Savage***
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