Continental Properties Development Gets Green Light from Council


Council votes to let Woodruff Road development go forward

June 4, 2008

By Ben Szobody – Greenville News

Greenville County Council opened the door to at least 360 apartments just off Woodruff Road on Tuesday over the objection of a raucous audience of dozens, approving 8-4 a project that developers say will come with some road improvements in the notoriously congested area.

Several members of an exasperated opposition crowd repeatedly yelled over the chairman’s gavel and filed out after the vote while shouting, “Hope your pockets are lined,” and “See you next election.”

Council members later expressed dismay at the contentious debate, which may have the effect of adding impetus to a developing countywide growth plan designed to help get ahead of future project waves.

In the end, traffic-weary neighbors didn’t want any more cars near two accident-prone intersections, while supporters said property owners have the right to develop a project similar to the surrounding neighborhoods where opponents now live.

The agonizing political choice was made clear by numerous lengthy council speeches justifying a vote in support or against.

Councilman Jim Burns, who is running for re-election in the district, received numerous rounds of applause and a standing ovation for arguing that even minimal added traffic will worsen a nightmare.

Councilman Joe Dill argued on behalf of the current property owners, saying the family has owned it since 1938 without opposing any of the surrounding development and now wants to sell their land for a similar project.

“Where do we get off thinking this (denial) is going to be fair to this man?” he said, adding his view that the site makes a logical “infill” project given the surroundings.

Audience members shouted, “What about our property rights?”

Councilman Willis Meadows said he wished more developers would make the concessions of Wisconsin-based Continental Properties Co., and that the project wouldn’t do any harm to area traffic.


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