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Columbia, SC 29204
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The mission of the Department of Planning and Development Services is to create better communities in Richland County through a public planning process. This is accomplished by incorporating best practices for balancing environmental and economic concerns in County land use regulations, creating incentives for redeveloping sites, revitalizing communities and employing GIS illustrating data to make complex problems easier to understand.
Divisions and Programs
E-911 Addressing and Road Naming
Boards and Commissions
Board of Zoning Appeals
Zoning Public Hearings
2017 Meeting Dates
Land Development Code Rewrite
New Land Development Code Will Shape Growth for County's Future
View the Land Development Code as approved during 2nd Reading on October 19. The text received 1st Reading at County Council's Zoning Public Hearing meeting on September 28. An additional Public Hearing was held on the LDC Rewrite at Council's November 9 meeting. A third, final reading of approval is required prior to the LDC being adopted. Changes may be made by Council as part of the third reading.
View the Planning Commission's Recommended Draft as recommended at their June 14 meeting.
View Recommended Changes for the Public Hearing Draft as presented to and recommended by the Planning Commission.
View the Big Differences between the Old Code and New Code (LDC Rewrite Cheat Sheet).
Visit the project website for information on previous work products and phases, or download the Public Hearing Draft.
LDC Rewrite In-Person Drop-in Meetings were held throughout the month of August. Additional meetings for the Remapping will be made available in the future.
The purpose of the Rewrite is to develop 21st Century regulations that implement the County’s vision for where and how it grows, are user-friendly for all citizens, align with current best practices, allow for development in different contexts, provide for higher-quality development, and support a more sustainable Richland County.
The LDC is the adopted law of the county that regulates land use, growth, and development. It governs everything from the types of uses, location, and size of a development within various zones, as well as establishes the procedures for how development proposals are reviewed, including approvals and denials. The LDC also controls various development and subdivision standards such as parking, landscaping, signs, addressing, building form, and open space within a development, and the division and platting of land as well as road layout and other infrastructure requirements.
The current LDC was adopted in 2005, which included a major overhaul from the code established in 1977. The Code Rewrite will be a significant departure from the current LDC and will not simply be an update or provide revisions but institute an entirely new land development code. Major differences to expect include:
- More user-friendly
- User-friendliness consolidates and reorganizes the LDC structure; includes illustrations, diagrams, flowcharts, tables; uses down-to-earth language; and standardizes procedures for applications and submittals.
- Implements policies of PLAN Richland County
- Implementing Plan Richland provides a greater range and type of housing choice than historically possible; eases the ability to undertake infill, redevelopment, and investment for commercial properties; enables preservation and continuance of rural character and working lands with appropriate zoning; allows for more open space, better conservation of land, incentives for green practices; and allows for military operations to continue and avoid encroachments.
- Aligns zoning districts and uses with current best-practices
- New districts, new uses, and new use standards allow for development in different contexts versus a one-size-fits-all approach throughout all areas of the County
- Bring development standards into the 21st Century
- Through contemporary development standards, such as modernized parking standards, minimum open space requirements, design and form standards, the new code will help provide for quality development all County residents can agree upon and enhances the quality of development.
- More green and sustainable development
- Green development practices will help provide a more sustainable County and more sustainable development pattern that benefits all.
Community Planning & Development staff hosted engagement opportunities beginning in May on the Public Hearing Draft. These opportunities consisted of a variety of options for citizens and property owners to learn about the LDC text, including: in-person 1-on-1 meetings and virtual public forums hosted via Zoom. Recordings of the public forums can be found on the County’s YouTube.
While working to finalize the LDC text, staff is also in the process of developing the Zoning Map for the new code. Staff has been working to get a Zoning Map ready for the public to view but has needed a more complete code text in order to proceed. Now that the Public Hearing Draft is available, staff can begin finalizing the draft Zoning Map. More information on the Remapping process will be released as it continues forward.
Brian Crooks, AICP, Interim Planning Services Manager
Tommy Delage, CFM, Asst. Zoning Administrator
Commercial Facade Improvement Program
Application Submittal Period is currently open lasts through June 1st, 2021 (late applications may still be accepted), or until all funds have been expended, whichever occurs first. Applications will be accepted and approved on a rolling basis.
The Richland County Neighborhood Improvement Program (NIP) has developed a Commercial Façade Improvement Program (CFIP) for the Broad River Road Corridor and Trenholm Acres and Newcastle Neighborhoods commercial areas to encourage businesses to improve the exterior appearance of their buildings, storefronts, and signage. This program provides up to $15,000 per activity in funds to finance exterior improvements to a property owner or tenant’s commercial building. The program is designed to retain and attract businesses, strengthen the commercial corridor, increase utilization of existing businesses, restore economic vitality, and enhance property values.
The program provides for a one-time maximum funding of $15,000 of County investment per improvement for businesses and properties. Eligible projects do not require a funding match, with the County providing 100% of possible funding up to $15,000.
Payment will be issued to approved vendors upon receiving invoices on business letterhead. Richland County will be responsible for all procurement processes. NIP shall pay the approved vendor directly on behalf of the applicant for eligible improvement expenses not exceeding the approved amount. The Commercial Façade Improvement Program funds shall not be applied retroactively to work started prior to the start of the program nor can it be applied to costs accrued as part of the application submittal process.
Applicant Eligibility and Requirements
Broad River Road Corridor
Eligibility for the program is for commercial businesses fronting Broad River Road from the 2200 block to the 3100 block (properties between the I-20 interchange and St. Andrews Road). The target area is within the Broad River Road Corridor and Community Master Plan, adopted by Richland County Council in 2010.
Trenholm Acres and Newcastle Neighborhoods
Eligibility for the program is for commercial businesses fronting Shakespeare Road from the 5500 block to the 6300 block (properties Fontaine Road and Humphrey Drive) and commercial businesses fronting Parklane Road from the 7300 block to the 7400 block (Moonglo Circle to I-20). The target area is within the Trenholm Acres/Newcastle Neighborhoods Master Plan, adopted by Richland County Council in 2010.
Applicants must be either the owner or tenant of a commercial, retail, or professional business/property with a current structure. If you are a tenant, a copy of the lease along with a Letter of Agency must be signed by the owner of the building with approval for exterior improvements to be completed. Applicants of multiple buildings/businesses may receive funding for more than one building/business, though they must complete separate applications for each. Likewise, all applicants must be currently registered and licensed with the Richland County Business Service Center with all County taxes up to date.
The program allows for any combination of eligible improvement elements including, but not limited to:
- Exterior signs
- Exterior painting
- Parking lot resurfacing or repaving
- Outdoor lighting upgrade or installation
- Security features upgrade or installation
- General façade work
Materials and Documents
Broad River Road
Trenholm Acres and Newcastle Neighborhoods
Project Manager - Matthew Smith
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone - 803-576-2190