A Mount Pleasant-based property development company has announced it will develop hundreds of new homes in the Orangeburg area.

M&P Land LLC plans to develop 48 townhouses on about three acres of the Sixo-1 project site. This site includes 65 acres adjacent to Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College on St. Matthews Road. St. Matthews Road is also known as U.S. 601.

In conjunction with Gateway One Development LLC, the second project will feature 177 single-family homes on a 60-acre tract of land on Bruin Parkway and will be named The Park at Wilkinson. The development will be across from the Orangeburg-Wilkinson High School ball fields.

The residential developments are just one part of a larger development planned for the U.S. 601 corridor.

In August 2020, Andrew Silver announced plans to build what is called the The Sixo 1 Project, a project complete with dining, retail, entertainment, lodging and residential.

“These (residential) developments will be centered around the 601 lifestyle center,” M&P Land LLC President and co-owner Andrew Silver told those gathered for the announcement at the Orangeburg County Development Commission earlier in August. “It is also near the Y club as well. It is about accessibility. It will help support the community and what is available at the moment and forthcoming years to come.”

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Ground is expected to be broken on both residential projects during the first quarter of 2022, with occupancy expected within six months after groundbreaking.

The developments will include single-family detached homes ranging from 1,700-square-feet to 2,500-square feet. Home price range will be from $180,000 to $350,000.

Home styles will also include townhomes and freedom homes that are geared toward an active adult community.

“We have a seat for everybody,” D.R. Horton Land Acquisition Manager Phil Bradley said, noting the company is excited be entering the Orangeburg market and a “growing community.”

The residential developments would have amenities such as a ballpark, cabana or playground.

“We have several different options we can do,” Bradley said.

Silver said the residential component of the project has been in discussion for the past 1-1/2 year to two years.

Silver thanked all the partners in the project including the property owners, the home builder, the professional team at M&P Land and county leaders for their support in the project.

The projects are entirely privately funded.

D.R. Horton will construct the homes. Gateway One Development will be undertaking the groundworks.

Silver and his wife, Emilee, own M&P Land. Silver also owns Gateway One, along with Mike O’Cain and Chad Rast of O’Cain Construction.

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“We are looking at a micro metropolis within that 601 corridor,” Silver said, noting that over the next five years he expects the $100 million project to bring a minimum of 500 to 1,000 homes to the area all “wrapped around the 601 development.”

Silver has touted the Sixo 1 project as creating hundreds of jobs as well as spurring economic development for the City of Orangeburg by the way of utility usage. It would generate income for Orangeburg County by the way of property and business taxes.

Silver declined providing more details about the commercial and retail side of his plans on 601 but said further details will be announced in October.

“It is moving forward excellently,” Silver said, noting that COVID has impacted “everything.”

“We have been working in a very difficult environment both in securing operators and moving forward as well with the residential development. This is why it is taking this long really. I was hoping with everything, both with the residential and with the mixed-use commercial, that we would really be six months advanced. We are playing catchup.”

County government and political leaders praised the announcement.

“It’s great to see these much-needed units added to the housing market in Orangeburg County,” Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter, D-Orangeburg, said in a prepared statement. “Thanks to M&P Land for their role in negotiating the deal to make the vision a reality.”

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“The county is excited to see housing come into our area, especially as we see new industries and businesses come to our area,” Orangeburg County Administrator Harold Young said. “We will have the space to continue to grow and thrive in our county.”

Young praised all leaders in the county for the project.

“It truly is a team,” he said. “When I met Andrew and he started talking about things we were wanting to do, I had goals, he had goals. I had vision, he had vision.”

“It is good to see all of this stuff finally being within arms’ reach of our citizens so they can enjoy,” Young said. “The best is yet to come. We still have more to do. The citizens of this county deserve just as much as anywhere else.”

Orangeburg County Development Commission and The One Orangeburg County Initiative Chairman Kenneth Middleton said the announcement is a “testament to the love Andrew Silver has for Orangeburg County and the people who live here.”

“His commitment has been unwavering, his results impressive and his efforts will impact our community for generations to come,” Middleton said.

“Every now and then, you get what you have been praying for,” Middleton said. “The partnership that is on the table is now absolutely, unequivocally one of those prayers being answered. We just hope it works in the way we are hoping it works.”

Middleton cited Silver’s vision for the future of Orangeburg County.

“You got to believe in what you saw,” Middleton said. “Thank you for having the foresight.”

Middleton said Silver is making Orangeburg a desirable place for people to live, work and enjoy great quality of life through his number of development projects.

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“This is a wonderful jump start,” Middleton said, noting Silver’s work is in line with the TOOCI strategy for the development of the county. “The power of one. One Andrew Silver. One Emilee Silver. One DR Horton and all the other entities like the county working together as one.”

Middleton, who is also a Realtor, said the housing project is crucial for Orangeburg County.

“It is an amazing time to be a part of the growth in Orangeburg County,” Middleton said. “This is extremely helpful because we can’t find product because demand far exceeds supply presently.”

“There is a lot of pent-up demand from two years of working around and through COVID,” Middleton said. “The ordinary flow of life is something that we don’t really pay attention to until somebody disrupts it.”

Both Middleton and Silver said Orangeburg is poised for the next growth spurt being that it is between Charleston and Columbia.

“We have always known and anticipated there would be a squeeze between Columbia and Charleston,” Middleton said. “The stars are lining up.”

Silver said with traffic load increasing in the Charleston area, Orangeburg is becoming more attractive.

“People are looking for a better quality of life and spending less time in the car and more time in the home or commercial office,” Silver said.

Century 21 The Moore Group Commercial Retailer Cal Bruner echoed the sentiment.

“I have never seen it this busy,” he said. “The number of out-of-town and out-of-state inquiries of the 601 corridor is really doing well. We are running out of inventory.”

The development of U.S. 601 comes as county officials work to improve the Exit 145 interchange at Interstate 26, as well as the St. Matthews Road corridor.

The planned improvements for St. Matthews Road include mast-arm traffic signals, handicap-compliant sidewalks, paved crosswalks, planted medians and underground wiring.

Two gateway monument signs have been built by the interchange. The signs have both the county and city seals.

The beautification efforts will eventually extend from Exit 145 into Orangeburg.

Silver has developed other projects in Orangeburg County.

He’s been involved with the Orangeburg County library and conference center under construction on Russell Street; the 17,000-square-foot High School for Health Professions building; the Orangeburg County Department of Social Services building; the Sigmatex building in the John W. Matthews Industrial Park and the Goodwill building on St. Matthews Road.

“The Lord attracted me here from day one,” Silver said. “It is divine intervention. I have been very blessed as an original alien here where the community has embraced me and supported me. I have not gone away. I have been determined to help the regeneration of Orangeburg.”

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