A rezoning request for property on Hereford Farm Road was denied Tuesday night by the Columbia County Commission after a discussion about the development that would go there and access to another roadway.
The commission voted 4-0, with Commissioner Lee Anderson not present, to deny the request made by Zafar H. Qureshi.
Willene Kupitz, a resident of Craig Drive, said her mother had sold property to Qureshi with the understanding that there would be no access in or out of Craig Drive as part of the sale and that only three or four homes would be built there.
She said that after the sale, she learned Qureshi was planning to construct 28 homes at the 4518 Hereford Farm Road site.
"We would have never sold the property,'' she told commissioners.
In the end, the commission voted against allowing a Residential Cluster Overlay rezoning. By doing so, the property's zoning stays as it is. Jeff Browning, the county's planning director, said the property's zoning allows 18 to 20 lots instead.
In other action, the commission voted to task Columbia County's Development Authority with selling the closed Warren C. Gibbs Library.
Commission Chairman Ron Cross said the property, which is no longer being used since the opening of a new library complex in Evans, could appraise as high as $1 million.
That amount would be deducted from the county's budget for the development authority, freeing up $1 million in the county's general fund, Cross said. The additional money in the general fund could allow the county to pursue purchasing about 15 acres owned by Richmond County off Evans to Locks Road near the Savannah Rapids Pavilion, he said. That land could be used for more parking for the pavilion area, Cross said.
Officials had considered Gibbs Library for county use. Cross, however, said it has since been determined that the property is too valuable not to sell, noting that the amount made from the property would help taxpayers.
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