Week Four- Barbara & Paul Franklin
We are hearing more about climate change as a motivation to retire to Asheville, Hendersonville, and Brevard. The extreme weather patterns many Legacy members are fleeing rarely occur in our mountain region. Western North Carolina has become an ideal place for “Climate Migrants,” as they have been labeled. While our members have many reasons why they chose Legacy, we do have “Climate Migrants” that would say climate change is on the top of their list.
For 10 years in a row Charleston, SC has been named the #1 City in the United States by Travel & Leisure Magazine! It is well known as a charming coastal City with historic architecture, beaches and a fabulous food scene….so why would anyone want to leave?
Barbara and Paul Franklin relocated from Pittsburgh, PA to Charleston, SC in 1988 – 9 months before Hurricane Hugo. They have experienced many hurricanes since then but have managed to stay safe on the 15th floor of the tallest condo building in downtown Charleston which is outfitted with steel hurricane shutters. However, every year beginning in June their thoughts turn to “Hurricane Season” and what might be ahead. Even if a Hurricane doesn’t come directly to Charleston it disrupts life in the City as everyone watches and waits with bated breath! Even without a hurricane or any kind of storm conditions, flooding due to high tides has increased dramatically in recent years making it difficult to navigate around the City.
To protect against storm surges the City is now planning a “sea wall” stretching more than 8 miles around the peninsula – a sort of concrete fortress. The Army Corps of Engineers is asking Congress to fund the $1.1 Billion project with the City paying at least 35%. Even when design is completed the project is at least a decade away from completion – definitely not a “quick fix” – and then the future impact on taxes and insurance costs for Charleston residents cannot be overlooked.
Barbara and Paul looked into the future and realized that as the years went by they would have difficulty coping with the nerve-wracking aspects of hurricanes and flooding which are not likely to diminish. Although they had been “on the list” for a CCRC in Charleston, they learned about Legacy and felt that a retreat to the mountains would be the right choice.
For 34 years the Franklins have soaked up the many charms of Charleston and will carry with them to Mills River their wonderful memories of the #1 City.