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Lorelei project dies before construction begins

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The Lorelei site, which sat on a plot of land known as Laurel Island, is undeveloped except for the remains of a coal tipple near the water. The developer has killed the project. (Photo/File)

A $1 billion mixed-use project planned for the Upper Peninsula that had been dubbed “a relief valve” for downtown Charleston is now dead.

North American Properties, an Ohio-based real estate company, had planned to develop 160 acres of waterfront property — sitting north of the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge near Morrison Drive — into a large development.

The 160-acre Lorelei tract sits near Romney Street and Morrison Drive north of the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge. A view from the air shows Laurel Island at the middle, with Drum Island on the right and Daniel Island straight ahead. (Photo/Andy Owens)The 10-year buildout was expected to transform Laurel Island into a large-scale project named Lorelei, developers announced in 2016. It would include 2,000 residential units, Class A office space, retail space, restaurants, at least one hotel, meeting space and an entertainment venue. Parking and boat access were among the amenities.

The company held a weeklong charrette in October and requested public input on the project on several occasions.

The company announced today that it no longer plans to pursue the Lorelei project.

“Lorelei represented a landmark opportunity to develop a community on a prime waterfront location in the heart of Charleston,” North American Properties managing partner Mark Toro said in a news release.

Mark Toro, managing partner of North American Properties, spoke during a community meeting about the Lorelei project in late June 2016. (Photo/File)The pace of discussions and anticipated timeline for the entitlement process did not align with the developer’s desired timeframe to complete the project, the release said. No other details were available at press time.

“We love Charleston, are so thankful for the engagement from the community in this project and will continue to look at investing here when the right opportunity comes along,” Toro said.

Reach Liz Segrist at 843-849-3119.

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