News 12 First at Five, February 5, 2008
NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. --- Plans for a new development on North Augusta's riverfront have been voted down.
North Augusta City Council voted 4-3 against the proposed Kingery Landing.
The planned development would have meant 40 houses and 256 apartments near River North Drive and the 5th Street bridge, near the River North development.
People who live in the River North development in North Augusta spoke up and the city council listened, blocking the proposed development in their backyard.
It was all part of a long North Augusta City Council meeting on Monday night.
Since 2000, Glen Baldridge calls River North his home. A creek and some woods... woods the North Augusta City Council was thinking of expanding with the new homes and apartments.
"This is something new for us to have an apartment brought right into the subdivision. I never seen that happen anywhere," says Glenn.
And it won't happen, at least for now. There is a calmness in River North, with palm trees lining driveways and that's something Glenn is concerned with, increased traffic. On Monday night, Glenn says a traffic engineer was on hand.
"He said what we all suspected. There's just no way they can handle this kind of traffic in the neighborhood," says Glenn.
But Councilman Arthur Shealy voting in favor of Kingery Landing, saying potential traffic not a huge problem.
"The level of service, even in the worst case was a D at the peak period, which is not that bad," says Shealy.
He says, it's comparable to Georgia Avenue and Buena Vista at peak rush hour.
"As my Yankee friends would say, Welcome to North Augusta. We have rush minute down here, not rush hour," says Arthur.
Although Glenn doesn't want apartments in the woods behind his house, he says development would be great. In fact, he says something like there already is in River North would be a plus.
"I'd even invite them to go to church. If they can build houses over there comparable to what's here, then it's a win-win for everybody," says Glenn.
Arthur thinks a win for North Augusta would be to minimize sprawl. Simply, building on existing areas, rather than multiple subdivisions spread out. He says that would reduce the area the city would be responsible for when it comes to providing services like water service.
The councilman says they really have 2 options. The first would be to come up with another plan and present it to the council. The second would be to have one of the council members who voted against the proposal to change -- if there is a revision to the proposal.
News 12 has reported earlier this year that some people who live in River North have opposed the Kingery Landing plan.
Amy Iannocone told News 12, "Not that we're opposed to apartments, but there are million dollar homes in this neighborhood and we feel like it will bring our land value down."
The North Augusta City Council made their decision early this morning.