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Richland County pushes back timeline for zoning changes

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Richland County has pushed back a timeline for adopting new zoning districts to give staff and the public more time to discuss possible changes.

The new districts fall under the county’s newly rewritten land development code, which governs building locations, permitted uses, signage, landscaping and other regulations.

The new code, adopted Nov. 16, includes a switch to density-based zoning, which removes the current minimum lot standard, and the addition of new proposed district, according to the county’s website. It also consolidates all development standards into 15 sections which include connectivity, parking and landscaping sections, and features green development incentives, among other changes. 

The county’s planning commission is meeting today at 3 p.m. to receive public input on the remapping process but will not make a recommendation to Richland County Council until an April 4 meeting at which the public will also be able to provide feedback. A county council zoning public hearing scheduled for March 22 has been canceled, with items from that agenda to be heard at an April 26 public hearing.

The schedule changes are in response to number of inquiries from the public about the remapping process, according to a news release from the county.

From January to March of last year, the County hosted a series of drop-in meetings to advise residents on how their property would be zoned under the new code. More drop-in sessions will be scheduled before the April 4 meeting.

Residents with questions about the process can visit the zoning office on the first floor of the County Administration Building, located at 2020 Hampton St. in Columbia, or schedule a meeting with a zoning staff member. Residents can also email or call 803-576-2190.

Reach Melinda Waldrop at 803-726-7542.

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