Monday, January 14, 2013
It appears a CVS Pharmacy tentatively planned to be built near the intersection of St. James Avenue and Fairfax Boulevard will not be approved.
At its Nov. 5 meeting the Goose Creek Planning Commission approved plans to rezone property so the pharmacy could be built. But Goose Creek City Council unanimously voted against the ordinance during its first of two readings at its regularly scheduled Dec. 11 meeting.
About 2.26 acres of property would be subdivided and rezoned to “General Commercial” adjacent to St. James Avenue while the 5.5 acres behind that area would remain “Restricted Commercial” property.
“I’m against this project,” citizen Dennis Richardson said during public comments. “It was originally zoned ‘Restricted Commercial’ with the idea of apartments or townhouses going in there.”
Richardson said in the 30 years he’s lived there the property in question has been woods.
If the zoning were changed to “General Commercial” the intersection would require a traffic light. “It’s not a safe intersection as it is,” Richardson said.
Acting City Planning Director Sarah Hanson said CVS planned to build a standalone retail store at the location and would close its Plantation Village location. She said the Planning Commission voted 3-2 to approve the proposed ordinance.
Councilmember Mark Phillips said if the zoning were to change it would be unfair to residents who bought property next to land zoned as “Restricted Commercial.”
Phillips further explained that CVS should think for the long term. The property may not always be a CVS and could turn into a business not fit for a neighborhood such as a gas station or a garage.
“I agree,” Goose Creek Mayor Michael Heitzler said. “I don’t think you change zoning for a business. The day after we decide to change it they may change their minds.
“You don’t change zoning unless there’s a change in the community. I have always voted in favor of the Planning Commission, but I think they made a mistake in this case.”