“Say No To Rezoning:” Greenville woman starts petition, bringing attention to draft development code

Published: May. 3, 2023 at 10:45 PM EDT
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GREENVILLE, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - Greenville leaders are still working on “the blueprint”--- otherwise known as the new zoning code. Its purpose is to guide growth and development. The city is asking for feedback and they’re getting a lot of it—including one woman who’s started a campaign educating people on why this is so important.

“I do love my neighborhood,” said Dolly Herron, who’s lived on Augusta Street for 30 years.

Herron adores her house and the single-family homes next door, but---

“There’s a whole lot of high-density growth that is happening and is slated to continue to happen,” said Herron.

Weeks ago, Herron began diving into the 400 pages of Greenville’s new zoning code. Her worries started with concern over how several church properties were being zoned. She was afraid the church next door could one day be apartments.

“I was shocked to see that all the churches have been rezoned from residential,” she said.

In the GVL 2040 plan, Augusta Street is designated as a city corridor, which means it’s ideal for blended development. Including commercial, retail and apartments. The new code, zoned many of the street-facing church properties as RNX-C-allowing blended development.

“Which would put a condominium complex up as close 4 feet to my property line and four feet from the back. That would completely change this whole neighborhood” said Herron. “I started talking to people and nobody knew anything.”

Thus, a petition was born– 1,400 signatures and counting. And the yard signs reading ‘say no to rezoning of your neighborhood,’ were an added touch to bring attention.

“People need to take a minute and look at it and ask themselves, you know, is this the direction I want the city to go or not,” said Herron.

Herron and dozens of others showed up in red for the April 11th Planning Commission meeting. In response, city staff agreed to change 11 church properties back to residential-like zoning. Herron’s still concerned about the lack of affordable housing, so her mission will go beyond Augusta Street, encouraging others to advocate for the type of growth they want in their neighborhoods too.

“It started with me and my little space, but then I realized how many people out there were just like me and didn’t know,” she said.

The planning commission will host another public hearing on May 15th, 4pm at Prisma Health Welcome Center at Unity Park.

Helpful links:

View the Updated Draft Development Code

View Proposed Modifications to Draft Development Code - As of April 28, 2023 (PDF)

To stay up to date on information click here.

Other Development Code stories:

‘It’s going to be the blueprint:’ Greenville releases draft development code for future growth

‘Not a lot of cities are doing that:’ How could Greenville’s new development code create affordable housing?