Design Charrette for Courier Square
preservation-admin , April 13, 2022
Left: PSC Advocacy Team discuss conceptual design ideas with architect Christian Sottile; Right: Community stakeholders attend an “Open House Pin-Up” to review design progress
Last week, the Preservation Society was pleased to participate in a multi-day design charrette held by Sottile and Sottile, Evening Post Industries, and Greystar for a major new building slated for 635 King Street. Known as Courier Square Phase II, Building 1, a previous design for the site was denied by the Board of Architectural Review-Large in late 2021, having found significant issues with the building’s height, mass and architectural expression.
Understanding the critical nature of the project and its ability to shape the future of upper King Street, the owner and developer team went back to the drawing board and hired Sottile and Sottile to redesign the building. Consistent with its track record of composing large-scale projects through community input, the team at Sottile and Sottile provided a forum for local stakeholders to share their vision for the Courier Square site.
Throughout the week, the architects hosted an open studio punctuated with events where residents, preservationists, City staff and other design professionals were invited to attend and give feedback on the future building. While much work remains, initial concepts for the design are promising, with strong references to architectural precedents in Charleston, emphasis on the building’s contribution to the skyline, and a welcoming, vibrant ground floor experience. As large-scale buildings continue to come forward and impact our fragile historic environment, the Preservation Society believes this type of collaborative process presents the best approach to design development and hopes it can serve as a model for other project teams in the future.