At the start of the millennium, Shem Creek, the iconic landmark and historic economic driver for the community, faced a bleak future. Properties along Shem Creek were dilapidated and unsightly, and pressure for re-development led to a growing fear that the public working waterfront would soon become entirely privately owned. Faced with these challenges, the Town of Mount Pleasant – informed by numerous public and stakeholder conversations–supported a series of improvement projects and the development of the Shem Creek Park Master Plan.
Mount Pleasant is experiencing explosive growth and has put several programs in place to help all stakeholders navigate the complex planning and zoning processes that govern development. Traditional efforts such as town hall meetings were simply not working. Members of the Mount Pleasant Planning Department staff recognized that the existing methods for sharing information and involving citizens in the decision-making process were impersonal and unappealing to most citizens and were no longer adequate.
Mount Pleasant is employing a balance of outreach from city departments and officials and engagement with community members through partnerships, dialogue and forums.