Riverside Road rezoning closer to being finalized

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By Jenny Hartley

A Texas company is closer to developing 2,000 acres on Riverside Road.

LGI Group has requested that its property be rezoned from heavy industrial to low-density residential, which allows for 1.5 homes per acre.

Some County Council members believe developing the property for homes will help rejuvenate the Riverside Road area.

Other councilmen think the property should remain heavy industrial in hopes that it will attract a manufacturing company – and jobs – to the county.

Council remained divided on the rezoning Monday night, with a 4-3 vote to rezone the property. Councilmen Jack Estridge, Bryan Vaughn and Wayne Kersey voted against the rezoning.

“I’ve always said it was a good industrial site,” said Estridge. But he said when it was rezoned to industrial about four years ago, he remembered

that council members promised that it would be zoned back to residential if no companies located there.

“I still have a lot of questions,” Estridge said.

Kersey said the planned housing development would likely flood the county’s already crowded schools with more children.

The development would mean at least 1,000 homes on a questionable sewer system and no traffic study has been done, Kersey said.

He said he’s talked with S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control officials, who are concerned about 1,000 septic tanks in a

development along the Catawba River.

“It’s amazing we’re sitting here with second reading tonight,” Kersey said. “We could end up with double-wide trailers. I am very concerned about some issues with this project.”

Eric T. Lipar, president of LGI Group, said a traffic study was done about a year ago. He said the company will gladly put in its development

agreement with the county that the property would be restricted to 2,400-square-foot or larger custom-built homes.

Council also voted 4-3 to approve the development agreement with LGI. Vaughn, Kersey and Estridge also voted against this related measure. The rezoning request and

development agreement must pass one more reading to be finalized.

“I had rather see a good planned development, instead of a company coming in and selling lots,” Estridge said Tuesday. “I wish they’d come to better

terms with us.”


Contact Jenny Hartley at 283-1151 or jhartley@thelancasternews.com