WHITEHALL DEVELOPERS EDGING TOWARD PLAN
Officials of MidCity Real Estate Partners told Coalition leaders last week it is edging toward an initial concept plan for the parcel and expects to have firmer plans within the next month.
Kirk Demetrops, CEO of MidCity and Associate Chase Powell were in Beaufort to meet with city officials, various consultants on the project and Coalition leaders.
A required tree survey has been completed, a traffic study is underway and the company is working with a retail consultant to help define the best use for an approximate 30,000 square feet of retail/office space on the property. (At 30,000 sq. ft., retail/commercial space would constitute approximately three percent of the gross area of the parcel)
Demetrops said the development focus for the property is increasingly residential. He told Coalition leaders that efforts to identify “the right kind of quality hotel” have not been successful, and it was unlikely that a hotel would be built as part of the first phase of development.
As part of the master plan, a one-acre tract (the area surrounding the dock at Whitehall) would be ceded to the City as parkland. He did not specify whether MidCity or the City of Beaufort would be responsible for development of the waterfront park.
Coalition leaders presented Demetrops with a copy of the Five Principles For Growth Management on Lady’s Island and asked if MidCity was willing to commit to them in developing the Whitehall property. The five principles were an outcome of the recent community forum and mapping sessions “Designing A Future For Lady’s Island.”
Demetrops said he had read the Coalition’s report on Lady’s Island and was aware of the Five Principles, and did not view them as an obstacle for MidCity moving forward.
“These principles do not stray from the way we at MidCity think or operate, by and large,” Demetrops said. “Our goal here is to make this development contribute positively to the life of the community. We want to develop Whitehall so it is a place the people of Lady’s island will want to come.”
TRAFFIC PLAN BEFORE COUNTY COMMITTEE TUESDAY
The “Lady’s Island Corridor Plan,” the traffic study undertaken by the City of Beaufort in conjunction with Beaufort County, will be considered by the County’s Natural Resources Committee tomorrow at 3 p.m. at the County Administration Building, 100 Ribaut Road, in Beaufort.
The plan has already been adopted – unanimously in each instance – by the Metropolitan Planning Commission, Beaufort City Council and the Beaufort County Planning Commission.
With a recommendation for adoption to the Committee, the study’s recommendation for a $28 million investment in traffic connectivity on Lady’s Island will go to the full County Council for adoption and inclusion in its Capital Improvement Plan.
Implementation will be in stages and will take several years before completion. At the top of the list of projects is a dedicated right-turn-only lane from Sam’s Point Road on to the Parkway at the “Publix Intersection.”
The Coalition has appeared before all relevant government bodies in support of the study’s recommendations and has urged quick action. The first critical choke point identified in the study happens in 2020. The full study can be read by clicking here.
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