Columbia County commissioners approved a rezoning for an apartment complex off Washington Road on Tuesday night, but denied a rezoning request for an Old Plantation site that would have allowed apartments.
The rezoning approval for the 30-acre site at 4060 Washington Road was from commercial-2 to apartment residential. Ryan Foster, a representative for a project slated for the site, to be called Stonebridge Crossing at Reed Creek, told commissioners the development would include 324 high-end apartment units being constructed in one phase.
"What we propose to do here is a luxury apartment-home complex,'' he said.
Before commissioners voted, the county's planning director, Jeff Browning, told commissioners that an apartment complex better suited the area in question than a commercial development. He said the rezoning also has a caveat that requires access to the property only by Washington or Kroger roads and requires a conservation easement at Reed Creek, providing for a buffer between the development and Heritage Hill subdivision.
"This will provide a pretty good buffer,'' he said.
Commissioners voted 4-0 in favor of the rezoning. Commissioner Tommy Mercer was out on vacation.
In the other proposed rezoning, commissioners voted 4-0 to disapprove a request for a rezoning from town home-residential to apartment-residential at a 2-acre site at 336 Old Plantation Road.
Jerry Kendrick, the owner of the property, told commissioners he feels that the property is better suited for apartments instead of town homes. County officials, however, said they feel a zoning to allow apartments might set a precedent that would allow other apartment developments nearby in the future.
Because of the density of the area, Browning said, his office recommended that the town-home zoning should remain.
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