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Powell Is Chapin Director Of Planning and Zoning

Posted on Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018 at 10:41 pm. Posted to Community.

The Town of Chapin has hired Nathan T. Powell of Columbia as its Director of Planning and Zoning, a position which has been vacant since the first of the year after the resignation of Chris Clauson. He begins his duties next Tuesday.

He was introduced to the members of the Chapin Planning Commission Tuesday, and is shown here being welcomed to Chapin by Mayor David Knight.

A native of Wheaton, IL, Powell is a graduate of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI, and holds a Masters Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Michigan State University.

He is an independent architecture and planning professional, and has been employed since December 2012 as an REO Specialist with the South Carolina State Housing Authority.

While working on his Masters Degree, Powell served in 2007 as a Research Aide in the Planning and Zoning Center at MSU. He completed a variety of assignments related to the evaluation of state and local land-use policy, regulation and development.

He participated in the development of the web-based Smart Growth Readiness Assessment Tool (SGRAT); a comprehensive toolkit that has enabled Michigan communities to analyze and improve policies, regulations and programs.

He was part of a seven-member team of urban planning students who developed the Grandwalk Trail Planning & Development Study for the cities of Grand Rapids and Walker, MI. The study proposed a pedestrian/bicycle trail through the urban “GrandWalk” community as one of many elements used to direct future physical development, environmental enhancement and business improvement in the area. The project was awarded the 2007 Outstanding Student Project Award by the Michigan Association of Planning.

He assisted the city of Pontiac, MI, in their 2007 Master Plan Update by assisting with facilitating community visioning sessions and the creation of an asset-based, economic development strategy to better position the city for the New Economy.

He compiled a statewide catalog of Michigan zoning ordinances concerning wind energy conservation systems in order to assess the state’s potential for energy production and economic development in this industry.

He conducted research identifying school location changes in Michigan over a 30-year period and distinguishing its relationship to broader land-use trends in the state.

He has also worked as a sales associate with the South Carolina State Museum.


Planning Board Wants Meeting With S-48 Project Managers

Posted on Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018 at 10:38 pm. Posted to Community.

Mayor David Knight told the Chapin Planning Commission Tuesday that he has “received a lot of input from local citizens about the impact for the Road 48 (Columbia Avenue) Corridor improvements project,” most of it negative.

He said he has talked with owners of businesses along Columbia Avenue, especially those near I-26, and that they are “shocked about how the proposed improvements are going to affect their businesses.”

He says that from his perspective, the project is going to make it impossible for people to access some businesses from Columbia Avenue and will bypass most of the businesses in the downtown area.


Community of Unity Prayer Breakfast

Posted on Friday, April 13th, 2018 at 5:05 pm. Posted to Community.

Chapin Community Prayer Breakfast, Friday, April 13, 2018, Chapin Town Hall. With featured guest, Rev. Wayne Atcheson, Billy Graham Library Director.

Program participants: Mayor David Knight, Rev. Marcus Jackman of Chapin Presbyterian Church, Rev Ralph Hill of Mt Horeb Lutheran, Rev. Josh Fink of Trinity Anglican, Rev. Paul Allen of Chapin United Methodist and Rev. Dr. J. Ben Sloan of Lake Murray Presbyterian. Color guard by Chapin High NJROTC. Performance by Chapin High School Chamber Singers directed by Nicholas Todd Shumate. Rev. Atcheson introduced by Councilman Al Koon.


Board approves site plans for Chapin Crossing retail center

Posted on Wednesday, April 11th, 2018 at 7:33 pm. Posted to Community.

The Town of Chapin’s Architectural Review Board in a special called meeting Wednesday approved a revised site plan for a 13,000 square foot retail center in Chapin Crossing in front of Publix.  The revised plan satisfies the Board’s wishes that the front elevation of the building face US 76, rather than toward Publix.

Board member Gerald Meetze moved to accept the revised site location plan, pending submittal of a landscape plan, lighting plan, revised sidewalk plan, and a new utilities plan.  The motion was unanimously approved by Board Chairman Ken Loveless, and members Harmon Reed, Jason Mack, Gerald Meetze and Bryson Tucker.

The revised plans were presented by Clay Cannon, representing RB Todd consulting engineers and Wes Taylor, of LTC Architects.

The building is designed with four facades.  With the front elevation now facing the highway, the plan allows for parking in both the front and rear and to the side of the building.

The original site plan had the building facing Publix with the rear facing the highway with no parking spaces between the sidewalk and the building.  Board members were concerned that despite a building design that presented an attractive façade on all sides, the area between the public highway and the building would have been primarily a service entrance.

Architectural Review Board rejects plans for retail center

Posted on Friday, April 6th, 2018 at 4:21 pm. Posted to Community.

The Town of Chapin’s Architectural Review Board Thursday rejected plans as submitted for a 13,000 square foot retail center in the Chapin Crossing center in front of Publix, which would be occupied by two restaurants and other businesses.

The primary sticking point was the Board’s insistence that the front of the building should face U.S. 76 (Chapin Road), rather than toward Publix as it is currently planned.

Board member Harmon Reed moved “that additional site plans should be presented to this Board and that approval of plans for the proposed Chapin Crossing Outparcel Development be denied at this point. That motion was unanimously passed by the three board members present – Chairman Ken Loveless, Jason Mack and Harmon Reed. Absent from the meeting were board members Gerald Meetze and Bryson Tucker.

After determining that several issues concerning the building elevation, facades and plans for pedestrian crosswalks had been complied with, the Board turned its attention to the proposed location of the building facing away from the highway.

Chairman Loveless said, “I think the discussion here is centered around what the hanging point of this whole thing has always been – is that we want the building to be on Chapin Road and the developer wants the building to be facing the existing shopping center. We considered this to be a four façade building and I think what our COG (Central Midlands Council of Governments) person was saying that he’s viewing those ends as facades additionally, not just the front and back.”

“We wanted the front of the building to be on our main drag. And we don’t want the back of the building in use,” Loveless said, displaying pictures of trash piled up behind the Publix building.
Board member Reed said, “We didn’t talk about what I think is the big gorilla in the room, which is that the façade which faces Highway 76 is the service side.”

Wes Taylor, architect with LTC Associates, said, “I think we developed that as a primary façade. I don’t know how we could speculate on function.”

Reed replied, “But nobody on the Architectural Review Board, nor you are the general contractor has any control over how the tenants act, and we don’t have any faith that the developer has any control over how the tenants will act. It’s my opinion that because that façade is the back door and the service entrance, it means all items go in and all sorts of items go out. It’ll be the place where employees have their smoke breaks. It will be the place where there will be garbage cans or containers of some sort. It will be the back of the building.”

Taylor disagreed, and becoming somewhat testy he said, “I think the façade has been developed as a primary façade. It’s either architecturally complying or it’s not. You’re talking about function that I have no control over. There’s nothing on these drawings that would indicate it’s a backdoor for trash storage facilities.”

Reed said “I think there are other ways to locate the building on this piece of property. This is not the only way.”

Taylor said, “If we’re talking about redoing the site plan, let’s just talk about that – not hide behind the building design.”

The Board questioned whether the building could be moved back with parking toward the road, or possibly turned 90 degrees.

Taylor questioned whether the Board has the authority to decide which elevation faces the main street. He suggested that the Board would have to accept a wall or a berm or a fence between the building and the highway if the Board wants to require that.

The Board’s decision to reject the plan with the front of the building facing Publix could be appealed to Circuit Court.

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