Proposal for apartments clears hurdle with Florence Design Review Board

January 10, 2019

FLORENCE, S.C. – The construction of two apartment buildings on South Irby Street took a step forward Wednesday afternoon.

Upon a motion by member Scott Collins and a second by member Julia Buyck, the city of Florence Design Review Board voted to approve a certificate of appropriateness to allow the design of the construction of two apartment buildings in the 700 block of South Irby Street.

Wednesday’s meeting of the design review board is the only public hearing that will be held on the construction of the apartments. The rest of the process will be between the developers and the city’s planning department.

It is hoped the apartments will spur development in the area on South Irby Street.

The design calls for the construction of two buildings, an 18-unit building that will parallel South Irby Street and a 22-unit building that will be set further back and perpendicular to South Irby Street. The design also features a playground and a mailbox kiosk.

The location of the apartments will be in the location of a former drive-in between the insurance agency of Dewey Powers and Creel Tire.

Developer Drew Schaumber said the apartments would be built for a similar demographic to apartments developed off Hoffmeyer Road and also off Freedom Boulevard behind the Food Lion.

Buyck and other members suggested that the developers work with the owner of some adjacent property to get an easement to allow apartment residents to access the nearby Timrod Park. The park lies directly across Coit Street from the property the board members suggested the apartment developers ask for an easement on.

The property upon which the apartments may be constructed is owned by Rogers Family Investment Holdings LLC.

The design review board is a 10-member board consisting of a professional architect, a member with experience in financing commercial and residential property, a member actively engaged in industry, a general contractor, a professional structural engineer, a member experienced in landscape design, a member of the city staff, two persons engaged in business in the city’s downtown, and two at-large residents. It is tasked with performing functions related to the city’s overlay district and historic preservation according to city code.

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