HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WSAV) — Living on Hilton Head Island isn’t cheap, especially for hundreds who work there every day. That’s why the Town of Hilton Head said it’s investing in a neighborhood to give workers who live on the island an affordable place to call home.
“This is not the solution. This is just one item that we can put in the box to help drive employees and housing to our area,” said Mayor Alan Perry.
The Northpoint development will sit between William Hilton Parkway and Marsh Point Drive. It’s been in talks for some time now and finally, the town has nailed down OneStreet Residential to develop the 11-acre project.
“I believe that OneStreet Residential values relationships and that this is not just a transaction,” said Marc Orlando, Hilton Head Island Town Manager. “And that was very important to me. They want to be here. They and they have a great track record, a very successful track record of financially sustainable projects.”
The goal is to build housing for people who work on the island at a price they can afford.
“This will serve our workforce. I’ve had a lot of those questions along the way,” Orlando said. “There’s a lot of programs out there where it’s — the project, the development — is situated and factors in only income. This project will factor in: Do you work here? You must work here to live there.”
The community will be a mixed-income neighborhood with half of the apartments dedicated to workforce housing. They have to make 80% or less of the median income in Beaufort County – which Orlando said sits at around $78,000.
“Early career nurses, early career firefighters. When you really look at that [area-median income] range, single people can afford the unit,” Orlando said. “They get married, they’re now above a range, above that 100%. And if we’re really trying to serve this to the island’s workforce, I think the project, the plan I intend to bring to the table serves the array in the continuum of incomes to a certain degree.”
The total cost is around $40 million and the town is pledging $1 million from its COVID-19 relief fund. Move-in day is still a ways away but the town hopes to break ground by the end of 2024.
“Our viability in our tax dollars are at risk by not having the proper employees in place,” Perry said. “So having the housing here is the first step to making certain that we have those employees here for today and for tomorrow.”