Charleston County’s world-class deepwater port, a growing international airport, and easily accessible ground transportation, makes it well prepared to serve your transportation needs. Located in a state within a two-days drive of more than 200 million people, crisscrossed by 41,000 miles of state-maintained highways and more than 2,000 miles of rail lines, Charleston County represents a strategic location for movement of goods. Companies also enjoy other valuable local assets including a vibrant ecosystem of transportation and logistics companies and suitable warehouse and distribution space.
“Charleston has it all – first-rate infrastructure, great access, a top ranked port and a skilled workforce. South Carolina’s numerous business advantages, in addition to the booming market, have helped Lineage to better service our export and import customers, as well as our domestic shipping partners. We are thrilled to expand our existing operations in what we believe is the right location at the right time.” – Greg Lehmkuhl, President and CEO, Lineage Logistics
South Carolina Ports Authority
Charleston’s world-class port is well equipped to take on any shipping challenge. The South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA) offers weekly service to more than 140 international destinations, regularly conducting vessels that draft up to 48 feet. The SCPA owns and operates the Port of Charleston, Port of Georgetown, Inland Port Greer and Inland Port Dillon. The port is internationally recognized for its high-efficiency rating—a rating based on speed of vessels navigating the natural harbor, availability of multiple terminals specializing in containerized, break-bulk, or rolling cargo, effective teamwork of port personnel and long shoremen, and smart time management with “truck turns.”
To ensure continued efficiency, the port is ever improving—with harbor deepening, development of a post-Panamax terminal, and purchase of state-of-the-art cranes and equipment to handle Post-Panamax vessels. In 2021, Phase One of the Hugh K. Leatherman Terminal will open offering an additional 700,000 TEU throughput capacity. At completion, the three-berth terminal will offer an additional 2.4 million TEU throughput capacity, effectively doubling port’s current capacity. The Harbor Deepening Project represents another major milestone on the horizon for the SCPA. At a 52-foot depth, the project will yield the deepest harbor on the East Coast allowing post-Panamax vessels the flexibility to “call on” the port regardless of tides.
Charleston International Airport
Charleston County is home to South Carolina’s “largest and busiest” airport. The Charleston International Airport (CHS) is a “joint civil-military” airport operated by the Charleston County Aviation Authority under a joint-use agreement with Joint Base Charleston. CHS is centrally-located in the City of North Charleston, just three miles from interstate 26. CHS delivers when it comes to meeting both personal travel and logistical needs. The airport was voted as one of The Best Airports in the U.S. in 2020 by Conde Nast Magazine readers.
The Charleston County Aviation Authority also oversees the Charleston Executive Airport (JZI) on the western part of the county on Johns Island and the Mount Pleasant Regional Airport (LRO) in the Town of Mount Pleasant to the east.
Other Logistics Resources
United States Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZs) – The FTZ program are special areas in the United States that allow companies to reduce import duties and other costs. Charleston County is located in FTZ 21. The Grantee for the FTZ 21 is the South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA). For more information on FTZs please contact the SCPA at (843) 577-8161 or visit the SCPA’s FTZ web page.
Industrial Sites and Buildings – There are multiple, strategically-located industrial sites and buildings available for manufacturing, warehousing and distribution operations. Palmetto Commerce Park, Charleston County’s largest class A industrial park is located in the City of North Charleston within a five-mile drive of the nearest interstate, 11-miles from the nearest airport and 15-miles from the nearest port. Search for Charleston County sites and building using the property search tool.