Lexington County homeowners call for zoning change as growth continues on peninsula

Lexington County homeowners call for zoning change as growth continues on peninsula

LEXINGTON COUNTY, SC (WIS) - Several property owners who live south of Chapin are calling on county officials to pursue 'responsible development' by adopting a zoning change for areas surrounding Amicks Ferry Road.

The road is the main route of travel for residents who live on a peninsula off of Lake Murray. Many homeowners say the area has seen a vast spike in traffic due to the rapid construction of new housing developments.

"Developments been a free for all," said Charli Wessinger, who has lived off of Amicks Ferry Road all of her life. "Growing up you could walk across the road here and not be in danger of being hit {by a car}, if you walk across the road right now you will get run over."
Several property owners say they also are concerned that the developments will keep coming if a new elementary school is built off of Amicks Ferry. Lexington-Richland School District Five is pursuing a purchase agreement for the property and is considering it for the new site.

"There's a lot of farm land that we want to see stay where it is," said Leslie Bundrick, who also lives off of Amicks Ferry Road, "and ya know our concern is typically when the schools come in, you see a ton of developments and businesses that come with that."

The proposed zoning change is currently in the midst of a series of county public hearings. If it's adopted by the county it would place greater restrictions on what can be built along the Amicks Ferry corridor. Current zoning laws allow for up to 12 homes per acre to be built on some spots. In some areas, the proposed zoning law would only allow four homes per acre and a ban on new commercial development.

The zoning amendment was first taken up at a meeting of the Lexington County council on May 9. The second public hearing will take place on June 8, 2017, at the Timberlake Country Club. The informational meeting will include a question and answer session and go from 3 p.m. until 6:30 p.m.

Thursday night officials with Lexington-Richland School District Five also responded to concerns surrounding the proposed school for Amicks Ferry Road.
In a statement to WIS, District Superintendent Dr. Stephen Hefner wrote: "An additional elementary school is needed due to the increasing student enrollment in the Chapin schools. All indications are that the Chapin area will continue to grow, and the district must respond to this growth. It is very important that the children in Chapin continue to be able to attend school in Chapin. As we are conducting our due diligence on this potential site, the school board and administration will utilize every means possible to maintain its record of providing safe and secure schools."

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