Dozens of Chapin-area residents on Thursday endorsed a plan to limit the number of new homes that can be built in a popular area on the north shore of Lake Murray.
A plan that would dramatically reduce the number of new homes that could be built in the Amicks Ferry Road area south of Chapin will preserve the largely rural character of the area, supporters said.
"I don't want another Harbison or mini-Irmo here," Karen Deaton said. "Keep it as it is."
Other residents who attended a public meeting with Lexington County officials at the Timberlake Country Club gave similar support. The plan would reduce the maximum number of new homes on an acre from 12 to four. Nearly 700 parcels would be affected.
County Council could give final approval to the plan in July.
"I don't want sprawl," Mark Ebert told county planners.
The push for the change comes as residents worry that Lexington-Richland 5 will construct an elementary school for up to 750 students in the area, a step that often leads to new neighborhoods. School officials acknowledge they may purchase 24 acres on Amicks Ferry Road two miles south of town for an elementary school.
Concerns abound that the area is in danger of "losing its own kind of charm," said Barbara Remick, president of the Timberlake Estates Homeowner Association. "We will lose that if we have growth that's too much, too fast."
The 55-square-mile area is home to nearly 4,700 residents, an increase of 400 since the 2010 census, according to estimates from the Central Midlands Council of Governments. Traffic on Amicks Ferry funnels into the center of Chapin, increasing congestion in town.