GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – Greenville County Council voted eight to four Tuesday night to send Article 3.1, a Land Development Regulations Amendment to a third reading. This comes as the county is in the middle of working to lay guidelines for how to develop rural and suburban parts of the county.
The ordinance, however, will revert to its original draft made up from the county’s Planning and Development staff recommendations, not with the changes added by council.
That’s because Tuesday night’s public hearing on the ordinance drew dozens of community members, calling on council to revert the plans back to the staff recommendations.
Those recommendations included specific regulations regarding dedicated open space.
Right now as stated, “Land dedicated for open space shall include rights-of-way of high tension electrical transmission lines, oil or natural gas lines, the rights-of-way of existing and proposed streets or such uses as community swimming pool(s), clubhouses and similar uses. Recreational lake or ponds may be included in the land designated as open space. Fenced vegetatively screened detention or retention areas used for storm water management shall be included in the calculation of the required open space.”
Concerned citizens tell 7 News they want open space to represent true open space.
“According to what’s in the article right now, an open space can be a swimming pool, an open space can be a clubhouse, an open house can be streets, that’s not open space,” said Donna Poulton. “Open space is a field. It’s a place where you can bring your family to have a picnic. You can play ball.”
Bryant Harrison is a farmer who shared with council that he is repetitively having to feed displaced animals who come to his farm looking for food. He argued he’d rather have them be kept in their homes.
“So by them having more space available to them that is natural, then they remain in the woods instead of in the garden,” said Harrison.
Some of the other concerns community members brought to council’s attention included how much of proposed subdivisions had to dedicate to open space. Planning and Development’s staff recommendations stated 40-percent, council changed that measure to 30-percent.
County Council will revisit the ordinance for its third and final reading when they meet in August.