BAR denies revised plan for Sgt. Jasper project, height still an issue

Published: Jun. 3, 2015 at 11:25 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 3, 2015 at 11:46 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, SC - In a special meeting Wednesday, the Charleston Board of Architectural Review, BAR, reviewed and later denied design plans for The Jasper project.

Board members denied the plans by a 3-2 vote, citing the height, scale and mass of the project were too much for the site.

For months neighbors of the Broad Street property argued The Jasper was too tall, some even referring to the project as an eyesore.

Once completed, The Jasper is scheduled to include residential, retail, and office space near Colonial Lake in downtown Charleston.

Architects presented plans before a packed house at The Charleston Museum, which saw a waiting list at the door, and residents vying for an open seat.

Revised plans included a building 55 feet lower, identical to the current height of the Sergeant Jasper building, also including more green space, and more generous, but hidden parking.

Charleston Mayor Joe Riley was among the first to comment on the new plans, calling them even more attractive than before, also approving of the reduced height.

According to Joe Antunovich, of Antunovich Associates, The Jasper project would stand 159 feet, six inches tall, five feet lower than Charleston's Francis Marion hotel.

Many residents were still dissatisfied with the revisions, calling them bulky, and scripted, among other complaints.

In a statement Wednesday, Beach Company CEO John Darby said the following:

"The plan we shared today incorporates feedback from more than 50 meetings with neighborhood and preservation groups over a span of eight years and addresses all concerns both the City and the BAR provided at our initial meeting." 

"We're disappointed with the outcome of today's meeting, but we remain committed to developing a quality project befitting this special part of the peninsula."

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