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A Vision for Beaufort

I just read Jim Andrews’ Jan. 5 letter to the editor titled “A Vision for Beaufort.” Now that is a vision I can support!!

Certainly seems worth more debate and investigation. Inspire, create, collaborate.

Happy New Year to All. Stay safe and stay healthy.

– Keith Aspray, St. Helena Island

re: Integrity of Beaufort’s National Historic Landmark District

I’m writing as a concerned City of Beaufort citizen; concerned in regard to our historic district in the face of new, proposed and encroaching development.

I’m certain our National Park Service, as well as Ethos Preservation, will make helpful and constructive guidelines in order to keep our downtown historic district status on our National Registry. However, I would like to drive home a couple points that I think of as important notations.

My wife and I took a stroll through the center (six) city blocks which are slated for the most profound redevelopment, (already) on the city’s draft table. These blocks are on the N/S sides of Bay St., the W side of Carteret St., the S side of Craven St., and the E side of Charles St.; very much the core of our downtown. We counted buildings not storefronts: 40 one-story buildings; 38 two-story buildings; five three-story buildings; and one four-story building. (This building is at 916 Bay St., one of the newest, and, argumentatively perhaps, should not have been built there).

Regarding Mr. Stewart’s master plan for the referenced six-block area, he is proposing all three- and four-story buildings, which would include a three- or four-story parking garage. As Ms. Lutz put so elegantly in a past opinion piece, “A canyon of three- and four-story buildings” for this area. In addition, architectural renderings for these buildings look very modern and non-Beaufortorian; maybe not as drastic as 916 Bay, but still aesthetically awkward for our area.

Many historic-minded citizens here are very concerned about unabated redevelopment for our quaint little town. Please help us and our city government make the right choices and decisions for a growth future that can and should maintain it’s historic standing and charm; not just how many people and cars we can squeeze into it. Thank you.

– Tim Wood, Beaufort

Note: The author originally sent this letter to the National Park Service and Ethos Preservation.

On conflict of interest

(Addressing) Lolita Huckaby’s column in the Jan. 6–12 edition regarding the perception of a conflict of interest associated with development issues, I note as follows.

First, in my experience in the business and investment communities and the judicial system, an appearance of conflict (of interest) can be as damaging, and generally is perceived as negatively and avoided, as an established conflict of interest.

Secondly, and more importantly, rationalizing that the Prichards do not have a conflict because the couple did not benefit from the wife’s job as a leasing agent for the developer is a red herring. The more relevant potential conflict of interest is whether the developer stands to gain by employing the wife of the Economic Development Director.

– Alan Stagg, Port Royal

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