Sherman was chosen to provide design/build construction services for The Waters at Saint James, which is now one of the largest workforce multi-family housing projects in South Carolina. The Waters of Saint James is located just off Highway 17A in Goose Creek, SC on 20.5 acres. It is comprised of 336 units within 14-buildings and features one, two and three bedroom garden style apartments. The complex includes quality amenities such as a leasing office, community/fitness center, laundry facility, pool, playground, and BBQ area. Our client was Atlantic Housing Foundation of Dallas,Texas, a nationally known developer of affordable housing that was focusing its apartment home development efforts in 2016-2017 in the suburban growth areas around Charleston, SC. There was a critical shortage of multi-family rental housing options in the area which was in large part due to the construction or expansion of manufacturing plants by Volvo and Mercedes Benz, which was estimated to create as many as 20,000 new local jobs in 2017. Eighty percent of the apartment homes offered in The Waters at Saint James were rent and income restricted through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program.
PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS: Because Sherman’s involvement began at the preconstruction phase at Saint James, staying within a realistic budget never became an issue, and the project – despite Hurricane Matthew weather delays and site challenges – was completed on schedule. Sherman employed lessons learned from just completed work at The Waters of Magnolia Bay regarding structural modifications as well as unsuitable soil issues indigenous to the site. These lessons learned were utilized in the pre-construction design phase to create budget efficiency, and also aided us in providing more efficient project management
in the construction phase, thus helping to keep the project on time and under budget.
At the Waters of Saint James, the greatest challenges to overcome were related to the actual site itself. The site covered 20.5 acres that was surrounded by protected wetlands. Three wet retention ponds were constructed to reduce the chance of storm water flooding due to the high groundwater table. This also meant that the soil at the site wasn’t structurally stable. We chose a remove and replace solution to address the unsuitable soil situation. Through resource leveraging and favorable relationships with local suppliers, Sherman was able to negotiate an excellent rate on the large quantity of good fill necessary to stabilize the construction site, and passed that savings 100% back to the owner.
Also, due to the property’s location, there was an extreme high humidity issue that presented itself within many of the units closest to the wetlands. Sherman utilized expert value engineering to help solve this problem by designing and installing individual dehumidification systems in the units to help manage the humidity level of the low country terrain.
Sherman completed our work on time and under budget at the Waters of Saint James within an 18-month time frame: July 2016 – November 2017. Because we were involved at the pre-construction phase, and employed lessons learned from previous project experiences that could be budgeted and planned for, Sherman was able to accurately estimate the construction costs and improve our overall project management efficiencies to meet all of the client’s priorities.