The state's environmental protection board turned down a plan Thursday that could make a narrow spit at Kiawah Island easier to develop for upscale resort homes.
Developer Leonard Long said the board's decision, which denied a wall to protect the land from coastal erosion, will likely be appealed.
Kiawah Development Partners II had asked the Department of Health and Environmental Control for permission to drive a 340-foot long sheet piling into the sand to safeguard the property from future erosion. The proposal did not include plans for development, but DHEC board members said it's clear developers want to build on the property.
Their decision overturned staff approval for the sheet piling. Staff members had said the protective wall would not lead to development.
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"To say that this will not facilitate development, I don't see how you make that statement," said DHEC board chairman Bo Aughtry, who is a developer. "I don't see how you come up with that interpretation. I don't see any other rationale."
- Sammy Fretwell