The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Charleston District issued a permit today to Berkeley County for an advanced manufacturing and assembly facility to be developed by Volvo Cars of North America. The project, originally identified as “Project Soter”, was announced on May 11 to be for Volvo, and is located along Interstate 26 near Ridgeville at Exit 187.
The project proposes to be completed in two phases, the first being construction of administrative offices, a visitor’s center and a manufacturing and assembly facility that will employ 2,000 people. Phase two proposes to construct a second manufacturing and assembly facility that will employ an additional 2,000 people.
Construction is expected to start in the fall of this year, with the first vehicles expected to be produced in 2018. The new greenfield plant will have the initial capacity to produce up to 100,000 cars per year.
“Issuing the permit for the Volvo facility will be a great economic driver for Berkeley County and the state of South Carolina, and includes important conservation properties within the Four Hole Swamp ecosystem, which has national and international significance,” said Lt. Col. John Litz, district commander. “We believe that we made the right decision for this project by balancing the economic needs of the area with the environmental responsibility of being the nation’s environmental engineer.”
Compensatory mitigation for impacts to 215 acres of wetlands was accomplished by acquiring, preserving, restoring and enhancing 1,533 acres of high-quality aquatic resources within six separate properties totally 2,496 acres.