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Greenbelt Bank, October 2

Approves acquisition of property on the ICW
Other projects go to Finance Committee today
Warwick Jones

The Countyís Greenbelt Bank approved another application for a rural grant at its meeting today. It was for $2.85 million, to be used to fund half of the purchase price of a 60 acre tract near Awendaw. The application was made by the Town of Awendaw. The ultimate owner under the scheme proposed by the Town would be the County Parks and Recreation Commission. The PRC would provide the other half of the funds, and would also manage the property

Appraised at $6.5 million
The owner of the property had originally proposed a 46 unit subdivision. The subdivision had been approved by the appropriate authorities but was opposed by the Coastal Conservation League. The legal proceedings initiated by the CCL are still in progress. The owner has also had offered the property to the town for $5.6 million, $950,000 less than the appraised value by Wachovia Bank.

Representatives of the PRC spoke enthusiastically about the property. With a 500 foot frontage, it would be the PRCís first property of significant size on the Inter Coastal Waterway. It would be developed similar to the Caw Caw property south of Charleston and not as an active park. Some members of the Bank board, although enthusiastic about the purchase, were not happy about the prospect of a number of docks being constructed into the waterway. The PRC said that this would not be the case. Notwithstanding, the board made its approval on the condition that only two dock were constructed on the property, and one of these could only be the replacement of the existing but small dock.

Publicís view will be sought on development
The PRC and the Town said that any development that took place on the property would only be after the public have opportunities to express their views. The board unanimously approved the grant of $2.85 million with the stipulation that there should be a 100 foot setback from the ICW, and a limitation of only two docks.

Other rural grants go to Finance Committee for approval today
Staff noted that the grants approved at the last meeting of the Greenbelt Bank Board will go before the Finance Committee this afternoon. A summary of the proposed grants can be seen by pressing Download file

Staff also reported that the County had run into difficulties closing on the acquisition of the Edisto Packers property. This property was subject to one of the first grants made by the Bank. The ultimate owner of the property would be the US government which wants all its land free of easements or restrictions. The ordinance relating to Greenbelt has restrictions on the use of grants. County staff and The Nature Conservancy are confident they will find a way around this impasse.