York County Council voted against changes that could slow or halt development in Lake Wylie because they weren't on the agenda. Now, they're on the agenda.
The final new business item to be discussed at the Sept. 2 meeting is first reading of an ordinance “to provide for a greater detailed purpose and intent” of the Lake Wylie overlay. The existing overlay largely covers the S.C. 49 corridor from Buster Boyd Bridge to Three Points.
The item is listed by title only, meaning full ordinance specifics on what would be enforced has not been written. The county requires three readings to pass an ordinance.
The title indicates Council will consider an ordinance to specify planning standards and regulations within the overlay, including open space requirements, discouraging mass grading, and designating a zone 2,000 feet from Lake Wylie's full-pond elevation to prohibit multifamily housing. It also would cap single-family residential density in the overlay at two units per acre and create a sliding scale of 25 to 40 percent for green space.
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At recent meetings, Bonum Road area residents flooded council chambers asking to stop development. They want limits on how remaining large land tracts near them can be used. The issue climaxed at the July 21 meeting, when 10 residents spoke up against development and Councilman Bruce Henderson called for a moratorium along S.C. 49.
“When you're talking about such a delicate area right on the water with such high density, it's going to be devastating to the lake,” he said.
Council members voted either they didn’t want such restrictions on landowners, or the issue warranted discussion but couldn’t pass without going through proper channels including placement on a Council agenda. Henderson cast the only vote in favor of the moratorium.
Resident Allison Love addressed Council on the same topic at the group’s Aug. 18 meeting.
"To them, you're the red tape and a delay to them getting started,” Love told Council. “And if you're seeing it on paper as good enough, their assumptions will be right. You don't care."
The council meeting begins at 6 p.m. at Council Chambers, 6 S. Congress St., York. A public hearing on the issue isn’t attached to first reading, but public comment will be taken on agenda items earlier in the meeting.