People Matter CEO on moratorium: "We're close to that tipping point"

By Stacy

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- The leader of the businesses that anchor Upper King Street agrees with city leaders that stakeholders must evaluate the growth of downtown Charleston.

However, he does not think city leaders have done enough to address the issue thus far.

People Matter CEO Nate DaPore moved his software company from North Charleston to Upper King Street 18 months ago. The promise of restaurants, businesses and shops pulled the company to the peninsula, he said.

"It was a very vibrant area. In essence, King Street is our corporate campus for our team members to participate in activities during work or after work," DaPore said.

DaPore and his shareholders have been happy with the move, he said. He did not see any downsides to being in the "fun part" of the Holy City. But, that could change, he said.

"There is concern from our standpoint around a lot of security issues such as the unfortunate death of a young man in the last year. We're close to that tipping point but don't feel like we've reached that tipping point yet," he said.

The planning commission passed a ban on new bars serving alcohol past midnight this week. DaPore said he didn't think the one-year moratorium would be effective.

"I still haven't seen the local leadership define for the region and articulate what that master plan is for this area," he said. "It really is going to take the community to come together and determine what's the right balance," he said.

Other technology companies have considered relocating to King Street, but none the size of People Matter has made the move. He said everyone, including politicians, neighbors and business owners, needed to come together, soon to make it happen.

Local restaurant owners opposed the moratorium passed at Wednesday's planning commission meeting. City council still has to vote.