A Grovetown man's request to force developers to tie his property into two planned subdivisions was denied Thursday by the Columbia County Planning Commission.
Robert Swann, the owner of 10.5 acres along South Old Belair Road, requested a street tie-in to his property from the developments along Columbia and South Old Belair roads because it is accessible only by an easement. He said surrounding developments would essentially landlock his property and make it impossible to subdivide it in the future, if he so desired.
When the land for the two subdivisions was rezoned last year, the county required the two parcels to tie their street network together to create a new road from Columbia to South Old Belair.
County code requires connections between developable land. Planning Director Jeff Browning said one of the two subdivisions would lose a lot if the planning commission chose to require the new connection.
Attorneys Harry Revell and Bill Trotter, representing developers Baldwin Lakes LLC and BSR Investments Inc., argued that the county did not have legal authority to buy a lot through eminent domain for a private road to a future private development.
Site plans for Baldwin Place, one of the two developments, were already drafted, they argued, and neither developer wanted to link to Swann's property.
Trotter argued that requiring a street tie-in to Swann's property would amount to "a crack in the vessel of private property rights," and Swann should seek a remedy by purchasing road frontage elsewhere.
Ultimately, the planning commission agreed and turned down Swann's request and approved the preliminary plat for Baldwin Place.
Also Thursday, developers withdrew a request to rezone 16.57 acres along Old Evans Road and Freeman Avenue from Residential-2 to Apartment-Residential.
In other business, the commission:
- Approved the rezoning of 21.40 acres at 4419 Hardy McManus Road from Special-1 to Residential-1.
- Approved the rezoning of 0.53 acre at 206 Flowing Wells Road from Residential-3 to Professional-1.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.