MOUNT PLEASANT -- Public worries about traffic snarls because of a new, 270-unit apartment development on Mathis Ferry Road prompted Town Council on Tuesday to defer a decision on the project for at least 30 days.
Cooper River Village would be located on 10 acres near the intersection of Mathis Ferry and Walt Miller roads. The Planning Commission earlier had approved the development 5-2, and Council Planning Committee had OK'd it 3-1.
However, council decided Tuesday in a unanimous vote to send the project back to the Planning Committee for further review. "I think there's a lot of confusion about the Urban Corridor Overlay District," said Mayor Billy Swails.
The district encourages growth, such as the apartment complex, in areas close to the Arthur Ravenel Bridge to reduce commuter traffic on U.S. Highway 17. Council passage of the district in March made Cooper River Village possible, said developer Adam Monroe of Middle Street Partners.
"This is an important project for our growth as a company," Monroe said.
When it happens, Cooper River Village will create 100 construction jobs and about 10 permanent jobs. The company will pay $1 million in impact fees and about $75,000 in annual taxes to the town, he said.
Monroe said the company would use the next 30 days to educate residents about the project. A town traffic analysis concluded that the apartment complex would mean 1,700 more commuter trips daily.
The entrance to the complex would be on Walt Miller Road, which links Mathis Ferry and a Johnnie Dodds Boulevard frontage road. Monroe said he expected most of the traffic would go to the frontage road rather than Mathis Ferry.
Charleston County Councilman Herb Sass, who lives in the town, said he was pleased that council decided to defer consideration of the project.
"What happened tonight is what should have happened. Mathis Ferry is a special road and it's got a lot of traffic on it right now," he said.
Mathis Ferry, a designated scenic road, is seeing more traffic these days because residents are using it to avoid highway construction on U.S. 17, he said.