Tag: rezoning request

Council Defers Four Mile Road Rezoning

Horry County Council deferred consideration of second reading of an ordinance to rezone a parcel of land on Four Mile Road until its first meeting in February 2020.

The deferral was taken to allow the developer to discuss a stormwater runoff plan for the project with county planning staff that will address concerns of surrounding residents.

However, after listening to public input from both sides of the rezoning, those opposing it and the developer, and to questions from council, it seems obvious that requesting the stormwater plan is a delaying tactic.

While stormwater runoff has to be a consideration with any current or future development, especially when considering the flooding that has happened in the county in three of the last five years, it is not the central issue of contention in this particular rezoning.

The central issue is that this particular parcel is inside the boundaries of what is known as the 319 Area Plan, a plan adopted in 2011 whose goal is to protect the rural heritage of this corridor between Conway and Aynor.

The 319 Area Plan stipulates that single family housing requires half acre lots for each home built. The rezoning request is for quarter acre lots for 202 single family homes.

However, the current zoning for the parcel is commercial forest agriculture (CFA) a zoning designation that predates the adoption of and is grandfathered into the 319 Area Plan.

CFA zoning allows multi-family housing with a density of three units per acre for the gross acreage being developed. This means the developer can build, on this parcel, a total of 387 multi-family units without any approval from council required.

The 319 Area Plan cannot stop the multi-family development. The public input from those opposing the rezoning and questions from some council members appeared to demonstrate ignorance of that fact.

Good or Bad Development on Four Mile Road?

Horry County Council faces an interesting conundrum Tuesday night when it considers second reading of Ordinance 113-19, which is a request for rezoning a parcel of approximately 129 acres on Four Mile Road.

The rezoning requests a change from the current zoning of Commercial Forest Agriculture (CFA) on the parcel to SF10 (minimum lot size of 10,000 sq. ft.) for 202 single family detached homes.

The land is located near the Conway end of the Highway 319 Area Plan which was established in 2011 to limit the impact of residential development and maintain the rural character of the area.

The 319 Area Plan calls for minimum lot size of 20,000 sq. ft. for single family homes. The request was recommended for disapproval by the Horry County Planning staff but recommended for approval by the county Planning Commission by a 5-4 vote.

Some residents in the area expressed concerns about lot size, potential stormwater runoff and increased traffic from the proposed development. The residents were upset that the minimum lot size they expected for single family homes in the area plan was twice the size being requested by the developer. They felt the 319 Area Plan minimums should be adhered to.

In a perfect world the residents demanding adherence to 20,000 sq. ft. minimum lot size would probably win their point. However, zoning and development within Horry County is far from a perfect world.

The current CFA zoning would allow the developer to build three units per gross acre of multi-family housing with no approval needed from county council to proceed. The residents opposing the rezoning that I spoke with after one planning commission meeting were unaware of this provision in CFA zoning.

The developer stated in several meetings with the residents and planning staff that he was prepared to go forward with multi-family housing if the request for rezoning for single family homes was voted down, in order to protect his investment in the property.

Therefore, in opposing the rezoning because the requested lot size is only one-half of that in the 319 Area Plan, the residents in the area would see as many as 387 units of multi-family housing built on the parcel instead of 202 single family homes.