CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The Beach Company says it is withdrawing its Planned Unit Development application for the site of the Sergeant Jasper apartments, according to a blog post from the company.
"Even with significant concessions, the plan was still met with resistance – largely due to misinformation about the project that was widely distributed throughout the community," the post states. "As a result, The Beach Company believes that the climate is no longer conducive for informed, productive public discussion pertaining to the PUD application, as demonstrated at the February 18th Planning Commission meeting."
So many people showed up to that meeting, there wasn't enough room for them, and the meeting ended up being deferred to another day.
Tim Keane, the planning director for the City of Charleston, said it was the biggest crowd he had ever seen at a meeting.
The company had requested a zoning change to redevelop the property, which it has owned since 1950, proposing about 450 apartments, a 35,000 square-foot grocery store or retail space and a parking garage that would sit in the middle.
In order to build the proposed design, the area must be rezoned from a limited business to a planned unit development, or PUD.
Beach Company CEO John Darby said the company has been committed to transparency surrounding the project.
"We have a talented, dedicated team that is committed to building a quality project that best serves the people who would like to call The Jasper 'home.' I am confident that we will create another great plan," Darby said.
The company will reevaluate its options for redeveloping the property, the post states.
Opponents to the Sergeant Jasper redevelopment project believe strong opposition prompted the change of plans.
"I'm not surprised, they had to do something, possibly because of the people who are so angry about it, the size of it, the increase in density and traffic that would affect our neighborhoods," Lucas Daniels, a resident of Harleston Place said.
"Sergeant Jasper is an aberration, we don't need another one," said Jay Williams Jr. of the Charlestowne neighborhood. "This is a time to get it right and this is a great opportunity."
A zoning meeting on the project scheduled for March 16, has been ccancelednow that the Beach Company has withdrawn its rezoning request.