Fort Mill town planners defer vote on new 982-home development

jmarks@fortmilltimes.comJune 25, 2014 

White

— Fort Mill planners did not review a proposal for almost 1,000 more residences in town.

The town planning commission deferred a decision June 24 on a mixed use request for almost 160 acres at the intersection of Pleasant and Vista roads. The commission will take it up in July. Initial plans are for Town Council to hold first reading July 14, then second reading July 28.

Fort Mill annexed the property in 2008 and it is zoned for mixed use development. County land records list several limited liability companies owning the nine parcels. The proposal includes 982 new residences – 662 multi-family units, 266 townhomes and 54 single-family. It also includes 10,000-50,000 square feet of commercial space.

The property sets aside more than 48 acres for open space, or 31 percent. The requirement is 20 percent. A 35-foot perimeter buffer is included.

“A variety of greenway trails and easements/donations are also provided,” reads the town staff recommendation to the planning commission.

A map presented to the town with the concept plan shows most development would occur just north of Pleasant Knoll Elementary School and adjoining land owned by the Fort Mill School District, likely a future middle school site. Open space and trail donations to Nation Ford Land Trust would come to the south and far northeast.

The site would have access on both Pleasant and Vista roads.

“Additional internal access points may also be provided to neighboring parcels,” according to the recommendation.

Patrick White, chairman of the Fort Mill school board, said the plan sounds like “a lot of people on Pleasant Road” but that the lean toward multi-family could be a positive for the ever-growing district. At least compared to the same number of residences were they all or mostly single-family.

“Apartments pay more money to the yearly operating costs than a single-family home does,” White said. “Obviously, since single-family doesn’t pay anything.”

Commercial properties pay a 6 percent annual tax rate with money going to school operations. Single-family homes don’t pay toward operations, only debt service which is a separate account.

The mixed use plan still needs a public hearing and two readings by Town Council for approval. The planning commission will offer its recommendation prior to first reading.

John Marks •  803-831-8166

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