The City Magazine Since 1975

If You Build It

August 2018
If You Build It
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Craftsmen come to create at The Workshops at Howard Heights

Julie and Bill Hussey (pictured above) built The Workshops from scratch, so the structure is well suited to tenants like Bill’s Custom Woodworking.

Bill Hussey has operated Bill’s Custom Woodworking for more than 20 years, but in 2014, he ran into a problem: he couldn’t find a suitable work space. Knowing that fellow builders and crafters faced similar hurdles, he and his wife, Julie, decided to offer a solution: a coworking collective for craftsmen. In May, The Workshops at Howard Heights opened off Spruill Avenue in North Charleston’s industrial district.

“We’re basically a covered playground for adults who like working with tools,” Julie says of the 6,000-square-foot warehouse with a loft-like floor plan that offers personal studios and resources like phase-three power and a forklift.

The communal aspect has already led to collaborations among 11 tenants who range from modern furniture-maker Formally LLC to Saw Moon Wood Decor. “Plus, it’s just more fun,” says Bill. “We all have a network we didn’t have before.”

The Husseys want The Workshops to be a boon for the neighborhood, too. “We bought two lots from Pastor Hicks next door,” Bill notes. “She’s using the money to fix up her church. This area is on the rise, and we hope to contribute to it.”