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Bojangle's parking lot issue goes to planning commission

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By Johnathan Ryan

KERSHAW – The Lancaster County Planning Commission will consider a request from the owners of Bojangle's in Kershaw to have a piece of property behind the restaurant rezoned for use as a parking lot.

The commission will consider the request when it meets Tuesday.

Bojangle's owners John and Ronald Campbell of Chesterfield County are seeking to have property rezoned from R-15, a residential district, to B-3, a business district.

The Campbells started work on the parking lot last year without getting the zoning changed first.

Residents in the area took note of the development, and were confused to see a parking lot being built.

The parking lot, until recently, was used by employees of the business and was a gathering place, said nearby resident Angie Helms.

"I can't turn my head. It's at my front door, it's at my driveway," said a frustrated Helms at the Kershaw Town Council meeting in May.

Helms' back yard is adjacent to where the lot was built. Only a few trees now separate the lot from the yard.

Lancaster County Code Officer Kenneth Cauthen said he informed the owners last year they'd be violating the county zoning ordinance by building the lot, but gravel was subsequently laid and parking started.

Cauthen sent the Campbells a letter last month indicating parking must stop or they'd face a $500 per day fine for non-compliance. It also stated a rezoning application must be submitted and approved before parking in the lot would be legal.

Parking has now ceased and the rezoning application has been submitted.

If the rezoning request is approved, the Campbells would be required to establish proper buffers, which would be shrubbery and trees or a fence with shrubbery and trees.

But with water conservation measures in effect, Cauthen said the county cannot enforce the landscaping requirement right now. As a gesture of good will, Cauthen said the county would like the owners to build a fence to separate the business from the surrounding residential areas.

The planning commission will meet at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in council chambers at the County Administration Building. There will be a public comment period.

Kershaw Town Council will consider the commission's recommendation either way.

Contact reporter Johnathan Ryan at jryan@thelancasternews.com or (803) 416-8416