Whitehall on Lady’s Island
Image from the Beaufort Civic Master Plan, adopted 2014.
(Rescheduled!) The Metropolitan Planning Commission will review the development plans on Monday, November 13th. Join us to learn more about development plans for Whitehall– 19 acres on the Beaufort River at the base of the Woods Memorial Bridge on Lady’s Island.
The Commission is set to review–and possibly approve–a new development plan for Whitehall. The applicant, Mid City Partners, is requesting a rezoning to TND – Traditional Neighborhood Development.
Whitehall, undeveloped now, is a logical growth area for the City. Whitehall’s location, along the water and close to downtown, is well suited for TND, but past development proposals for this property have been hotly contested.
Today, we are in a much better position to get this development right because we have three new important tools: Beaufort’s Civic Master Plan, adopted in 2014, this summer after 80 public meetings; Lady’s Island Growth Principles; and the Beaufort Code, a zoning code adopted this summer after 80 public meetings.hese guiding documents help describe a vision for Whitehall as a “a fully integrated, mixed-use, pedestrian friendly neighborhood” that can “be a logical extension of downtown [Beaufort] that complements, but does not compete with, the historic core.”
The October 2017 development plan:
The proposed plan for Whitehall includes commercial space along Highway 21, independent living facilities, apartments, bicycle and pedestrian access from the Woods bridge and a 1 acre park. This plan has strengths but does not yet meet the standards of the Traditional Neighborhood Development.
What is similar to Whitehall? Click here to see similar developments that have components of traditional neighborhoods.
On Monday, we will ask planning commission members to ensure the proposed development plan for Whitehall adheres to the goals of the Beaufort Civic Master Plan and Beaufort Code. We will continue to ask that developers:
- Protect trees and view corridors,
- Facilitate bicycle and pedestrian access to surrounding areas (downtown, Woods Bridge, Beaufort High School, Factory Creek waterfront),
- Provide public park space along the water; and
- Require that the development meets the goals of a TND.
The proposed plan by Mid City Partners includes a thorough tree survey, includes accommodations for bicycles and pedestrians inside the development and onto the Woods Bridge, and provides a 1 acre park These are commendable additions. It should further include the components of a traditional neighborhood described in the Beaufort Code:
- integrated, mixed-use land use
- a variety of housing choices
- pedestrian-oriented blocks – with respect to the grid and block size
Why does all of this matter?
The Civic Master Plan represents the guiding vision for growth in the City. It gives residents and other jurisdictions a road map about how the City intends to grow which influences what roads and infrastructure is needed, what services may cost to provide and what complementary land uses exist. Disregarding the comprehensive plan and the Beaufort Code which codifies it challenges the integrity of the plan itself and gives uncertainty to future city growth. As the first rezoning proposal to come after the adoption of the Beaufort Code, this project carries an even higher burden to meet the standards set.