[image-1]Speaking from Charles Towne Landing in West Ashley, Mayor John Tecklenburg began his second State of the City address with a look back at his first year in office.
Beginning with matters of public safety, the mayor applauded the efforts of those involved with the Illumination Project and the law-enforcement initiatives developed as a part of the program. The mayor then shifted focus to something that has become a problem all across Charleston and will only continue to affect the lives of residents — flooding.
After touching on the drainage projects continuing throughout town — from the start of Phase 3 of the Spring/Fishburne Drainage Improvement Project on the peninsula and the Forest Acres Drainage Improvement Project to benefit West Ashley — Tecklenburg acknowledged that sea-level rise poses an increasing threat to the coastal city. It is for this reason that the mayor has named the city’s emergency management director, Mark Wilbert, to the newly created position of director of Emergency Management and Resilience.
Wilbert will be tasked with working with city staff and officials to further build the city’s resilience to the effects of sea-level rise and flooding. During his address, Tecklenburg specifically mentioned the Church Creek Drainage Basin — in flooding which has plagued several West Ashley neighborhoods.
Moving from persistent flooding to the arts, the mayor took some time to applaud Spoleto’s screening of Porgy and Bess and the appointment of the city’s first poet laureate, Marcus Amaker.
From traffic concerns and the management of Tent City that began his first year in office to the new affordable housing ordinance that recently earned its first round of approval from City Council and the revitalization of West Ashley, Tecklenburg’s speech showed that there remain many weighty issues with which the city continues to grapple.
You can check out the mayor’s State of the City address in its entirety below.