Protecting your family, in our Hometown, for a LIFETIME!

roofer in St. George, SC

Have you ever taken a second to really think about how important your home's roof is to your health and safety? It's so much more than a simple hat for your house. It protects you from the elements like rain, sleet, snow, and wind. It helps keep you and your family warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Those harmful pests and critters you see roaming around your property? Your roof helps keep them away from your family, too.

When you take those points into account, it becomes clear that your home's roof is crucial for year-round well-being and comfort. So, when your roof is nearing the end of its life, or it needs maintenance or repairs, hiring a reliable roofer in St. George, SC is an investment you shouldn't pass up. For South Carolina homeowners and business owners, only the best and brightest roofing experts will do when it comes to their family's happiness and safety. That's why they call on Hometown Roofing to handle all their repair, replacement, and maintenance needs.

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The Hometown Roofing Difference


Hometown Roofing has been the top choice for roofing services in South Carolina for years. As locals of the Lowcountry, we pride ourselves on being more than just a roofing company. We're your friends and neighbors. As a family-owned business, integrity, hard work, and personalized service are at the forefront of our values. We believe in providing our loyal customers with the highest quality work completed by experts in their respective fields. Why? Because that's the way we would want to be treated, too.

At the end of the day, we strive to treat our customers with respect, confidence, and understanding. Our goal isn't to rip you off or charge you an arm and a leg for our residential or commercial roofing services. As an Owens Corning Preferred Contractor, our goal is to work hard and provide you with a long-lasting product that you will love for years to come. It's really that simple. When you choose Hometown Roofing, you can rest assured that you'll get the highest quality roofing services in South Carolina, such as:

  • Roof Repair in St. George, SC
  • Roof Replacement Services
  • Roof Maintenance Services
  • Emergency Roofing Services
  • Roof Inspection Services
  • Commercial Roofing Services
Roofer St. George, SC

The Hometown Roofing Process

Whether you're in need of a complete roof replacement in St. George, SC, or minor roof maintenance, our process starts with an in-depth consultation and ends with a smile on our face.



At the consultation stage, we have a meeting with the client to talk about their roofing needs and evaluate the property. Based on our expertise, we provide recommendations to ensure the best solution for the client's specific roof replacement, repair, or maintenance requirements.

Detailed Proposal

Detailed Proposal

In the detailed proposal stage, we create a comprehensive document that outlines the scope of work relating to your roofing project, the materials to be used, project timeline, and estimated costs. This provides the client with a clear understanding of the roofing project, enabling them to make informed decisions.

Project Installation

Project Installation

During the project installation phase, our team of licensed experts executes the previously agreed-upon plan. We install or repair the roofing system with unmatched confidence and experience while always adhering to industry standards, safety protocols, and local laws. During this process, we strive to stay in touch every step of the way so our clients are always in the loop. We then complete your roofing project within the specified timeline so that clients experience minimal disruptions to their daily lives.

Final Inspection

Final Inspection

When it's time for the final inspection of your roofing project, our roofing contractor's work is thoroughly examined to ensure it meets our high standards and our client's roofing needs. If there is additional work to be done, we'll finish up the project ASAP. If our client has questions or concerns, we always address them before heading home. That way, our customers can rest easy at night knowing they have a reliable, well-maintained roof over their heads.

Protect Your Home or Business with Roof Repair in St. George, SC


Living in South Carolina means experiencing unpredictable weather patterns. Bright and sunny skies can quickly turn into heavy rainfall, which can cause damage to your roof. That's why it's important to have a reliable roofing company to perform expert repairs when needed.

Whether you suspect damage has been done to your roof or you want preventative maintenance, Hometown Roofing is here to handle the hard work for you. A thorough roof inspection is the first step in understanding your repair needs. Our team will then repair any damage, like weather-worn shingles or roof leaks, to ensure your family is safe and protected.

Some of the most common roof repairs we provide for homeowners and business owners include the following:

  • Torn or Damaged Shingle Repair and Replacement
  • Tile or Shingle Replacement
  • Roof Shrinkage Issues
  • Roofing Leaks
  • Ventilation Issues
  • Pooling or Standing Water
  • Storm Damage Repair
  • Damaged Gutter Repair
  • Roof Flashing Repair
  • Much More
 Roof Repair St. George, SC

Don't wait until it's too late to schedule repairs - your roof might only be one or two South Carolina storms away from needing more than simple maintenance or repairs! South Carolina homeowners and entrepreneurs trust Hometown Roofing for their roof repairs because we:

Prioritize Safety

We put a lot of stock in the ethos of "Safety first before everything." As licensed contractors with years of experience, our roofers have the tools and training to repair your roof without you needing to worry about their safety. Of course, your safety is of utmost importance, too. Hiring an experienced professional saves you from putting yourself and your family in a compromising situation that could involve hospitals, doctors, and injuries.

Because the truth is, roof repairs usually require climbing ladders, balancing on high roofs, and working under pressure. Those aren't things an average homeowner looks forward to. By working with Hometown Roofing, you're leaving the difficult work up to highly trained experts, so you can focus on your family, not recovering from an injury sustained from DIY roofing.

Have Extensive Roofing Experience

You can tell whether a roofer is worth hiring by asking them about their roofing experience. The very best roofers usually have years, if not decades, of professional experience. Those years working up on roofs out in the sun is priceless for homeowners and business owners who want the best roofing service. At Hometown Roofing, our contractors have extensive knowledge and experience, both in advanced applications and basic roof repair theory. Unlike some roofers, Hometown Roofing team members have real-world experience and certifications - something that no amount of reading or watching YouTube videos will provide.

Maintain Warranties on Roofing Products

As a homeowner or business owner, you want every assurance that your new roof or roofing products will last for the long haul. That's why we're proud to provide a 50-year manufacturer warranty and a 20-year labor warranty on all new asphalt architectural shingle roofs. We also provide a 20-year labor warranty on all new standing seam metal roofs and a 10-year labor warranty on new tuff-rib metal roofs.

Provide High-Quality Roofing Craftsmanship

Our team at Hometown Roofing is dedicated to delivering exceptional roof repairs and top-notch service. We take pride in our work and strive for excellence when repairing, replacing, or installing roofs in South Carolina. We understand that even the smallest details matter, which is why we thoroughly inspect our work to ensure the highest quality. Our main objective is to surpass your expectations with true roofing expertise, not just average service. For long-lasting roof repairs, trust the professionals at Hometown Roofing.

 Roof Replacement St. George, SC

Reliable Roof Replacement in St. George, SC

When it comes to getting a new roof for your home, you want to make sure it's done right. That's why you need licensed professionals to handle the complex and intensive process. It may seem like a big investment, but the long-term benefits are worth it. You'll enjoy increased safety, comfort, and a higher home value. At Hometown Roofing, we're the go-to company for roof installations in South Carolina.

Our experts have completed hundreds of successful projects, and we hold ourselves to the highest standards for product longevity, customer satisfaction, and quality craftsmanship. Whether you're looking to upgrade your roof or need a replacement due to damage, we've got you covered. We specialize in many types of roof replacement projects, including:

  • Asphalt Roofs - Cost Effective, Popular, Versatile, and Appealing
  • Metal Roofs - Long Lasting, Low Maintenance, Energy Efficient, Superior Protection
  • Commercial Flat Top and TPO Roofs - Durable, Energy Efficient, UV and Chemical Resistant, Purpose Built for Your Business

When Is It Time to Replace Your Roof?


At Hometown Roofing, one of the most common questions we get is, "How do I know when it's time to replace my roof?" That's not always an easy question to answer since every roofing structure and every roof replacement scenario is slightly different. Roofs endure harsh weather conditions like extreme heat, strong winds, freezing temperatures, and heavy rainfall, which can damage their protective layers. Although some roofs can last up to 25 years, shingles and other materials may deteriorate over time and become brittle, crack, tear, or disintegrate. While it can be challenging to assess the condition of your roof from the ground, these signs may help you determine when it's time for roof replacement in St. George, SC.

Begin Looking Indoors

It might seem counterintuitive to look for signs of disrepair inside your home, but rooms like your attic can show signs of damage much better than outside areas. Be sure to grab a powerful flashlight first and look carefully for streaks, stains, and drips. Also, keep an eye out for light beams poking through the top of your house. If you see these signs, there's a good chance your roof has leaks and should be replaced.

Cupped, Clawed, or Curled Shingles

You'll need a good view of your roof to check for these red flags, which are telltale signs that your roof is near the end of its life. Curling and cupping look alike and manifest with the ends of your shingles peeling away and pointing up. Clawing happens when the middle of a shingle lifts up while its ends stay attached to the roof. None of these conditions are good, so if you spot them, know that it could be time for a roof inspection.

Age of Your Roof

How old is your roof? If it's more than 25 years old, chances are it's on its way out. The average lifespan of an asphalt roof is 20-25 years. When that time frame passes, you should consider looking at replacing your worn-out roof.

Friends in Your Neighborhood are Replacing Roofs

If you're driving around your neighborhood and notice one or more roofers in St. George, SC, make a mental note to inspect your roof. It's common for houses in neighborhoods to be constructed at the same time, with the same materials purchased in bulk by the builder. As a result, the roofs of these homes tend to deteriorate at a similar rate. With that in mind, if you observe your neighbors replacing their roofs, it may be a sign that you should consider doing the same.

Your Roof is Sagging

A sagging roof is a sign of structural problems and may require a new roof installation. This problem is typically caused by water damage or a broken rafter, and it's important to have a licensed and insured roofing company, like Hometown Roofing, address the issue. To properly diagnose the problem, the contractor may need to remove the shingles and plywood sheathing underneath.

Roofer St. George, SC
 Roof Repair St. George, SC

Emergency Roof Repair in St. George, SC


Hometown Roofing is available to assist when disaster strikes. We recognize that roofing emergencies can occur at any time, so we provide 24/7 emergency roofing services to homeowners in our community. Here is an overview of the critical emergency services we offer:

Available 24/7
Available 24/7

When you're in a roofing emergency, Hometown Roofing is always here to help. Our expert team is available 24/7 to respond quickly and professionally to any crisis. We understand that your home's safety is your top priority, and we're committed to mitigating damage and providing peace of mind during difficult times.

Help with Insurance Claims
Help with Insurance Claims

Dealing with insurance claims can be overwhelming, especially after a disaster. That's why Hometown Roofing offers assistance navigating the complicated process of working with your insurance company. We'll help you document the damage and submit the necessary paperwork to your insurance provider, ensuring a smoother and more successful claim.

Emergency Roof Tarping
Emergency Roof Tarping

If your roof has suffered severe damage and can't be repaired immediately, our emergency tarping service can provide temporary protection from further harm. This solution will safeguard your home from the elements until repairs can be made. Trust Hometown Roofing to keep your home safe and secure in any roofing emergency.

Storm Damage Repair
Storm Damage Repair

When severe weather hits, your roof can take a beating. From losing shingles to damaging the structure, it can leave your home vulnerable. That's where Hometown Roofing comes in. We offer quick and reliable storm damage repair services to ensure your roof is safe and secure once again.

Stabilize Your Home's Structure
Stabilize Your Home's Structure

If your roof has been severely damaged by a fallen tree or other catastrophic event, call Hometown Roofing ASAP. Our team is here to help. We'll stabilize your roof, preventing any potential collapse or further damage, helping provide peace of mind and comfort in a trying time.

Remove Debris
Remove Debris

After a storm, your roof can be covered in debris that may cause additional damage if left unattended. Our experienced professionals are equipped to safely remove any debris, ultimately preserving the lifespan of your roof.

Temporary Roof Repair in St. George, SC
Temporary Roof Repair in St. George, SC

Sometimes, extensive repairs to your roof can't be completed immediately after an emergency. Our team of roofing experts can provide a temporary fix so that your home is safe, dry, and protected from more damage.

Repairs for Emergency Leaks
Repairs for Emergency Leaks

When your roof sprouts a leak suddenly, it can be catastrophic. Hometown Roofing professionals will locate the source of your leak and provide a quick, effective solution to your problem.

Emergency Roof Inspections
Emergency Roof Inspections

When a severe weather event or other emergency incident occurs, you may need a roof inspection to assess the totality of your damage. Hometown Roofing inspections identify needed repairs. That way, you plan for the next steps and do what's necessary to protect your roof and your family.

Hometown Roofing: South Carolina's Premier Choice for Quality Roofing Services


Hometown Roofing was born out of a rich legacy and a steadfast commitment to quality. Unlike many roofing companies in South Carolina, we stand by the ethos of doing everything right and never cutting corners. We extend that commitment to your home, whether you need minor roof repairs, a total roof replacement, or something in between. Contact our office to schedule your initial consultation today.

 Roof Replacement St. George, SC

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132 E 2nd N St, Summerville, SC 29483

Latest News in St. George, SC

Growing pains may hit St. George with proposed 'cluster' housing development

ST. GEORGE — The tiny town in northwest Dorchester County might be getting some new next-door neighbors, and more, in one residential influx than it has ever seen before.If approved by the county, a "cluster" housing development proposed by the D.R. Horton, a national builder, would bring more than 330 new homes and a new zoning designation for roughly 300 rural acres near the "Town of Friendly People."Business...

ST. GEORGE — The tiny town in northwest Dorchester County might be getting some new next-door neighbors, and more, in one residential influx than it has ever seen before.

If approved by the county, a "cluster" housing development proposed by the D.R. Horton, a national builder, would bring more than 330 new homes and a new zoning designation for roughly 300 rural acres near the "Town of Friendly People."


While the development would land on Sugar Hill Road outside town limits, St. George would provide water to the development while Dorchester County Water and Sewer would provide sewer services, said Kiera Reinertsen, the county's planning director. The development would also add an estimated 100 students to Dorchester School District Four and draw on services and amenities from St. George’s Fire Station Nine, Davis-Bailey Park and the town’s library.

“We’ve never had this many houses come in at one time since I’ve been here,” said Mayor Kevin Hart, who has lived in the town for 35 years.

The 2.8-square-mile town is home to roughly 1,800 residents, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Now the county seat, St. George was originally called George’s Station as a stop along the South Carolina Railroad, now Norfolk Southern. It was incorporated in 1875.

“We haven’t had a housing development like this in this area before. There’s no way we can stop them, but we have to make plans. We won’t know it works until we see how it goes,” Hart said. "... Some want to keep our small-town feeling. It’s a tough battle, and we knew it was coming. You can see the progress coming all way up Highway 78. Harleyville is having the same challenge as St. George.

SC Climate and Environment News

“We’ve got to hope and pray our best laid plans go well for our little town.”

Described as “America’s largest home builder” on its web site, with operations in 45 markets nationwide and 1 million homes constructed since its inception in 1978, D.R. Horton wants to change zoning for the property for the proposed development from agricultural residential, which allows one-acre home lots, to single family residential (R-1), which reduces lot sizes to a third of an acre.

The cluster concept proposed relies on meeting the greenspace requirement by using that of an old golf club adjacent to the property to be developed. Members of the county’s Planning, Development and Building (PDB) Committee reviewed the request for information only on Jan. 8.

In an R-1 zone, said Reinertsen, there is a requirement that 30 percent of developable acreage be conserved as open space and 20 to 25 percent of that is required to be usable open space.

“Cluster developments allow for smaller lot size but preserve greater areas of open space. I believe that the intent is that a lot of that golf course area or all of it will remain open space. I believe they are looking to develop 338 homes over the next 4 to 5 years,” Reinertsen explained during the committee meeting.

“The services are in place to support a development like this.”


He didn’t disagree with the services available to the development, but PDB chairman and County Councilman David Chinnis took issue with two other factors in the cluster proposal. One point of contention Chinnis raised was the development’s cluster design, which he said not only depends on a housing community having accessible green space nearby, but also that the green space is developable.

“I see some open space that is created as open space because the development possibilities are nearly zero, because of the disconnect from the property. I need to know how they intend to connect it. If they’re getting credit for open space, I expect it to be something that is usable, not just something that is imaginary. Cluster ordinance benefits only really apply if it’s developable green space,” said Chinnis, explaining later to The Post and Courier that the spirit of the county’s cluster development ordinance was to create something similar to community pocket parks.

The benefit to homeowners is green space around their homes, he said, while the benefit to the developer is that it costs less to install utilities when homes are closer together.

D.R. Horton’s proposal still must clear several more bureaucratic hurdles, including a second review by the PDB with a vote, and three readings with votes by the full County Council.

The proposal is only conceptual at this stage, Reinertsen assured the PDB members. The planning department had not received a submittal at the time of the Jan. 8 meeting.

“They’ll have to show me green space access that a neighbor isn’t going to be able to build a fence across,” Chinnis said.

The second point of contention the PDB chairman made was about the lack of traffic-calming measures included in the proposal.

“There are zero traffic calming measures in here. There’s zero. ... There are no splitter islands, roundabouts or anything,” Chinnis said during the meeting.

He later emphasized the county has found that speed bumps don’t make effective traffic control measures in residential communities.

“There’s things they’ll have to incorporate into the design. They may have to drop a few home lots to make it all work,” Chinnis said. “Landowners may have property rights, but land developers have property responsibilities to the community where they are building.”

Rosenwald students recall struggles and hope at reopening of St. George school

An historic school built for African Americans in 1925 is restored and reopened in St. George, S.C. as a community center and museum. It will share the stories of those who created it and were educated there. Painted bright white with a red, tin roof, the St. George Rosenwald school in Dorchester County looks new. Inside, former student Clara Britt is excited to sit behind a small, wooden desk again.“I never thought that this would happen,” says Britt, giggling like a schoolgirl. She’s about to turn 102-year...

An historic school built for African Americans in 1925 is restored and reopened in St. George, S.C. as a community center and museum. It will share the stories of those who created it and were educated there.

Painted bright white with a red, tin roof, the St. George Rosenwald school in Dorchester County looks new. Inside, former student Clara Britt is excited to sit behind a small, wooden desk again.

“I never thought that this would happen,” says Britt, giggling like a schoolgirl. She’s about to turn 102-years-old.

Sitting beside Britt is former classmate Ordie Brown. He’s 94-years-old and met his wife here.

“She was taking home economics,” says Brown. “They were practicing how to cook. She would give me lunch out the window.”

Brown and Britt are reunited for the reopening of the historic St. George school. After years of fundraising, planning and construction, the restored schoolhouse will now serve as a community center and museum, sharing the story of African Americans denied an education and the hope they found in schools like St. George Rosenwald.

Built in 1925, the schoolhouse is known as a Rosenwald school because it was funded in part by Julius Rosenwald. He was the son of Jewish immigrants who became the president of Sears, Roebuck and Company.

Rosenwald met educator Booker T. Washington in 1911. The founder of the Tuskegee Institute believed education was the key to African Americans breaking free from generations of oppression.

Together, the wealthy business owner and the educator born into slavery, set out to build schools for Black children.

At the time, 90% of African Americans lived in the South. Yet, schools for Blacks were just shacks with merely a fraction of the funding as White schools, if they existed at all.

Rosenwald offered to match funding in Black communities that raised money for schools and got the support of local white schoolboards. The idea was to get communities to work together.

Black families, already paying taxes for white schools, struggled, but came up with the money. They knew education could be life changing.

“If you’re a parent who can’t read or write, you want your kids to be able to that,” says former state Sen. John Matthews.

Matthews is grateful for the education he received at a Rosenwald school in Bowen, S.C. He helped raise money for the St. George restoration.

Between 1917 and 1932, roughly 5,000 Rosenwald schools were built, educating more than 600,000 Black children. Their graduates include civil right activists like Medgar Evers, John Lewis, and Maya Angelou.

Today, 500 Rosenwald schoolhouses remain but many are in disrepair. Former students like Ralph James want to save them.

“We see the progress, that in spite of these things, we tell the story of how persons made it,” says James. “How they were successful in life.”

A retired municipal judge, James attended the St. George school until it closed in 1954. He’s made it his mission to resurrect the schoolhouse and proudly gave a tour during its reopening earlier this month.

James says the six-teacher schoolhouse is one of the largest in the state, repurposed with electricity and bathrooms, amenities that did not exist when he was a student. He points to potbelly stoves and brick chimneys that warmed children who often had to walk miles because there were no school buses for Black children. And, like most Rosenwald schools, the building features tall windows with classrooms strategically placed.

“Because they had no light, they had no power and they didn’t want shadows on their desks,” explains Micah Thompson with the Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina, which helped with the restoration.

Congressman Jim Clyburn joined the tour as a special guest during the reopening. His late wife graduated from a Rosenwald School. He said preserving them pays tribute.

“Making sure that we honor the blood, sweat and tears of those who made this community what it is today.”

The congressman helped celebrate Brown and Britt as members of the school’s first graduating class. Brown spoke about playing basketball for the school with the team making a big tournament. But they’d only played on a dirt court.

“We went to the white high school and asked to practice on a wood floor,” said Brown. “But we were told no.”

Britt, meantime, was smitten with Clyburn.

“I had no idea I would ever meet you,” she said.

But Britt took issue with a banner that read she and Brown graduated in 1950.

“Our class is the class of 49. So, I would like them to change that sign,” said Britt as a roomful of guests erupted in laughter.

And, who’s going to argue? Britt is known as the student who once rode an ox to school to maintain her perfect attendance.

The George in Georgetown, SC, Is Now Open

The George Hotel has opened its doors to welcome guests. The design-forward waterfront property from Indigo Road Hospitality Group and Winyah Hospitality has 56 rooms and suites alongside a full-service restaurant, marina bar and private event spaces, making it the first of its kind on South Carolina’s Hammock Coast.Georgetown, SC, is a common stopover for boaters traveling the eastern coast and The George offers prime marina ac...

The George Hotel has opened its doors to welcome guests. The design-forward waterfront property from Indigo Road Hospitality Group and Winyah Hospitality has 56 rooms and suites alongside a full-service restaurant, marina bar and private event spaces, making it the first of its kind on South Carolina’s Hammock Coast.

Georgetown, SC, is a common stopover for boaters traveling the eastern coast and The George offers prime marina access, allowing boaters the opportunity to enjoy the hotel’s amenities, while also providing a port for guests to enjoy excursions, such as fishing and sailing, in Winyah Bay. In addition to on-site activities and events, The George offers a variety of spaces that can be booked for semi-private and private events, including a meeting and event room, outdoor greenspace and bar, Eliza’s, and on-site restaurant, The Independent.

Housing 56 rooms, 42 of which are waterfront, the hotel has been curated by Jenny Keenan Design, which used a collection of vintage European furnishings and custom pieces. The lobby sports two-toned hardwoods and lime-washed plank walls, patterned sofas, wing-backed chairs and "oriental" rugs. The corridor of the first floor displays a large painting of a mermaid and alligator by artist David Boatwright of Charleston.

There are several room types, including two suite variations with living rooms and balconies, the largest being approximately 725 square feet. Each guestroom includes vintage seating and sideboards with custom fabric headboards ranging from detailed chintz to soft pastel stripes. Rooms vary in color scheme, while cypress softwoods stripe the floors and walls of communal spaces.

Located within The George Hotel, The Independent is a seafood restaurant and raw bar paying homage to the community’s former seafood market by the same name. Guests can expect a seasonal menu of Southern-inspired dishes guided by the region’s seafood. Raw offerings such as littleneck clams, peel-and-eat shrimp and oysters on the half shell are complemented by prepared small plates, chef selections and à la carte proteins and sides.

Located on The George’s greenspace, Eliza’s waterfront bar serves as a casual retreat along the Sampit Riverfront with lounge seating and outdoor games. It offers island-inspired cocktails with a small menu of light bites, snacks and a full raw bar, as well. The name serves as tribute to South Carolina’s Eliza Lucas Pickney, who was largely responsible for the indigo crop hitting the map, and the first woman to be inducted into South Carolina’s Business Hall of Fame.

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300-acre rezone request in St. George goes before planning committee

DORCHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - The Dorchester County Council is looking at a proposal to rezone 300 acres of land in St. George through using a new process.The rezone ask is to allow for clusters of homes and create a high-density neighborhood at the old St. George Country Club property. Monday, the topic appeared on the agenda only as an informational meeting within the planning committee.Committee Chair Dave Chinnis says the informational meeting a the committee level first is a somewhat new step in the process.&ldqu...

DORCHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - The Dorchester County Council is looking at a proposal to rezone 300 acres of land in St. George through using a new process.

The rezone ask is to allow for clusters of homes and create a high-density neighborhood at the old St. George Country Club property. Monday, the topic appeared on the agenda only as an informational meeting within the planning committee.

Committee Chair Dave Chinnis says the informational meeting a the committee level first is a somewhat new step in the process.

“One of the things that we seem to always do is give everything a first reading automatically. But we also had questions so then we get a second reading, and we ask questions, and we weren’t getting answers. To a third reading, which was ultimately when we were making the decision to pass or not to pass to zone or not rezone something,” Chinnis says.

Walking through that process, Chinnis says the lack of preparation didn’t make much sense to him. Talking with a Charleston County Council acquaintance, he decided to adopt one of their steps for large proposals - like the 300 acres in St. George. Thus, the informational meeting now happens before coming to council, to make future readings and public hearings even clearer on the details.

“I believe this St. George project is probably only the second maybe the third that we’ve had this,” Chinnis says.

Chinnis says this process will hopefully benefit everyone with an interest in a project. At the old St. George Country Club, the land is zoned agricultural, which allows for building houses on one-acre plots. The developer wants to change that to one-third acre plots but is promising to include green space. Chinnis says he’s already been able to nail down what that green space will be.

“I know in this case, we talked about open space being accessible, like community parks, pocket parks, so the people living in this neighborhood can go to their local park,” Chinnis says.

Chinnis says this is only the earliest stage of the major proposal, and there will be three full council readings, including a public hearing in the future. Now, he believes, those discussions will have more answers readily available when the public or council asks questions.

“The public gets input on everything. Sometimes there’s reasonable concerns. A property owner has certain rights, just like the person speaking has rights on their property. That property owner has rights on what they can and can’t do to their property and balancing that is always the challenge,” Chinnis says.

Chinnis says the public hearing for the 300-acre old St. George Country Club re-zone request will be at the St. George chambers, and the date will be posted 15 days ahead of time.

Copyright 2024 WCSC. All rights reserved.

Historic Rosenwald School to inspire exploration, learning as Children's Museum expands

ST. GEORGE — Four former classrooms in the historic Rosenwald School in St. George will once again become a place to teach young minds as the space becomes the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry’s first — but not last — satellite location out...

ST. GEORGE — Four former classrooms in the historic Rosenwald School in St. George will once again become a place to teach young minds as the space becomes the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry’s first — but not last — satellite location outside of Charleston.

The renovated St. George Rosenwald school is one of about 500 in the state and one of nearly 5,000 in the South, all constructed in the early 1900s. Those who have rallied behind preserving the school envision it becoming the community center of the town. It reopened to the public in August.

When it was built in 1925, it was a six-teacher school dedicated to educating African American children. Now, the north wing of the H-shaped building will take on a new life educating future generations as an extension of the Children's Museum of the Lowcountry.

A new museum

The approximately 2,500 square-foot space within the Rosenwald School will feature a tinker lab with hands-on exhibits to explore engineering concepts; a child-sized grocery store where children can learn about nutrition, commerce and money; a space that can promote visual and performing arts; and classroom space for educational programs or field trip groups. It is expected to open in spring 2024.

Karen Coltrane, CML’s president and CEO, called it a "natural extension of our efforts to serve the greater Lowcountry" outside of its downtown Charleston location.

Coltrane said it’s about teaching kids basic concepts that they can connect to real-world situations. For example, a child may see the apple tree and grocery area in the new exhibit, and the next time they are at the store with a parent, they can understand apples come from trees and that people buy apples at the store with money.

“Making those kinds of connections are vital in early development,” Coltrane said. “It’s easier to get them excited about science and learning when they’re little instead of trying to spark it later.”

The milestone marks the nation's first adaptive reuse of a Rosenwald School as a children's museum satellite. It's the starting point for the museum's plans to expand to more rural areas of the Lowcountry.

“It’s going to be a game-changer in expanding access to museum resources for school field trips,” Coltrane said. “By the time you load up a bunch of kids from these more rural areas and bring them downtown, they don’t have a lot of time to spend at the museum itself. This would give them more hands-on access closer to home.”

Connecting past with present

Ralph James, chairman of the board that operates the Rosenwald school, called the restored building the “jewel of the community.”

“It has always been the desire of the community and alumni of the school to see it restored,” James said. “The original effort of the school was built on the foundation of an opportunity to empower members of our community to be able to increase their educational pursuits. We look forward to offering cultural enrichment to the community once again and again charging students with the task to be all that they can be.”

Revitalizing the school has been more than a decade in the making.

Coltrane had taken a tour of the Rosenwald building in 2015 with then-state Rep. Patsy Knight. At the time it was shuttered, shrubs were overgrown and the weatherworn building was not in great shape, Coltrane recalled. She was leading EdVenture in Columbia, scouting for a potential secondary location. While it didn’t pan out, it ignited the idea for the historic building's potential to become a museum outpost.

Coltrane had moved on to other ventures before returning to the Palmetto State to lead the Children's Museum in downtown Charleston. During her second week on the job, Ralph James, board director of the Rosenwald School, called her asking if a children’s museum satellite post was still on the table. Her immediate answer was yes.

While grants and donations are funding the buildout of the project, Coltrane hopes to secure federal and state funding to operate it in the short term. Ultimately, the goal is to open another satellite location in Dorchester County that could help offset operating costs for the Rosenwald location.

The Children’s Museum downtown sees roughly 130,000 visitors per year. The museum is currently trying to raise $4 million to revamp the downtown location. While expanding the downtown location is out of the question, Coltrane hopes they can reconfigure and maximize the space with new and refreshed exhibits.

“Because we operate within the constrictions of a historic building, the only way to grow is to make the best of the space we have and add additional locations,” Coltrane said.


Investing in the future

The project was funded through investments totaling $300,000 made by Boeing Co. and other local philanthropists.

Erin Fisher, a senior manager for the 787 maker's community engagement efforts, said that efforts to develop a workforce pipeline can't just target high school and college-age students. She said it starts by pushing children to embrace problem-solving and science- and math-based concepts, with the hope that it will set them down a career path in advanced manufacturing or engineering, she said.

“Our work with the Children's Museum is a way to support education from cradle to career,” she said. “This is an opportunity to engage with students on the early childhood level to spark the curiosity that leads to an innovative mindset. That is what we're looking for in our workforce and teammates here at Boeing South Carolina.”

Over the last five years, Boeing has donated $925,000 toward the museum's makerspace, pop-up tinker shop and mobile STEM lab programs that expand the museum’s outreach beyond Charleston county.


Mission first

Coltrane said that she is proud that the first satellite location is driven by being of service to the community rather than revenue generation.

“Mission and margin drive each other forward, but growth is not just defined by the bottom line," Coltrane said. "The priority now is to see growth in the number of children we can reach across the Lowcountry and the types of services we can offer them outside of our downtown hub.”

James hailed the project as an example of the good that can come from public-private partnerships, when the community, town, county, public officials and companies unite for the same goal.

“We are very fortunate to have a multiple-pronged approach to what we can offer,” James said. “We'll be able to demonstrate history from 1925 through now. This place has always been about empowering our young folk, so now we're able to do the same thing, especially with the utilization of the Children's Museum.”

Visits to tour the historic classrooms are currently by appointment only. Once the museum outpost comes online, there will be more regular hours, according to James.

“Having a partner, purpose and a vision was the catalyst that got the movement going on this,” James said. “We hope that other rural areas and small towns will see the benefit of this and will duplicate the efforts happening here.”


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