The goal of the Kiawah Island Architectural Review Board (ARB) is to achieve an uncommon and visually pleasing blend of natural beauty and manmade improvements by providing standards and guidelines for community areas as well as residences, in accordance with the development’s comprehensive Master Plan.

Operational Changes
At the direction of our emergency management authorities and local medical community and to aid in the global response to COVID-19, the Architectural Review Board is modifying its operations as follows:

  • For New Home Submittals at the Conceptual, Preliminary and Final Review:
    • All submittals will now be accepted electronically only and can be sent to No paper copies are needed.
    • See August 2020 Memo for updated sheets needed.
    • The stake out at the Preliminary level will still need to be completed prior to Preliminary submittal.
    • The sample material board will need to be dropped off outside of the office prior to Final submittal.
  • ARB applications for existing homes and all other inquiries can be submitted to in lieu of in-person drop off. We also accept mail in applications and online applications for maintenance permits.

As we continue to monitor and follow the guidance of the emergency and medical community, we plan to maintain these operational conditions will evaluate resumption of our normal schedule as soon as possible. Kiawah has a unique population, with members hailing from all over the country and the world, and many in the “at risk” age range. We are doing our best to respect those in our community and those who work in our offices. Thank you for your understanding and patience as we implement these changes. If you have any questions, we are available at

The ARB is now accepting digital submissions. Please see the memo for more information.

ARB Benefits for Homeowners

The Kiawah Island ARB is committed to protecting and enhancing your precious asset. To do this, we help you achieve an environmentally sensitive design for your new home through careful consideration of the configuration of your home site, the Lowcountry climate, existing vegetation, and topography of the building site. Thus, one of our primary objectives is to assist you with your planning efforts, and we stand ready to do so.

Enhance Value with Smart, Sustainable Design – Kiawah Island Insights – June 2014

“Gnarled limbs pruned by prevailing breezes, dense undergrowth dappled with sunlight, native grasses speckled with salt spray: the natural beauty of Kiawah Island is its greatest asset. The role of the Architectural Review Board (ARB) is to preserve this beauty by ensuring that each home is a careful addition to its natural setting. Difficult to accomplish? Yes. Rewarding when achieved? Definitely!” Read more…


“As a Lowcountry native and architect, I’ve had plenty of opportunities to interact with architectural review boards. The best among them are those that develop strong design guidelines, have members who are eager to help with questions and find solutions, and most importantly, are comprised of professionals in the field — architects, developers, landscape architects, and community representatives. A very good example is the Kiawah Island ARB…”McDonald Architects