A proposed retail development across from Blythewood Middle School failed again Monday to win support from Richland County’s planning commission, one of whose members has a close family tie to the project.
The 3-3 vote, with commissioner Patrick Palmer recusing himself Monday, means the zoning change request goes back to County Council. The council has previously rejected the change.
Palmer recused himself from the vote because his father, Hugh Palmer, owns the 5-acre tract along Rimer Pond Road that, if rezoned, would become eligible for commercial projects such as a restaurant, dry cleaner or other businesses. Patrick Palmer said he has no ties to the ownership of or marketing of the property.
The commissioners who voted to allow the rezoning are Christopher Anderson, Stephen Gilchrist and David Tuttle, county spokeswoman Beverly Harris said. Voting no were Wallace Brown, Beverly Frierson and Ed Greenleaf, the spokeswoman said.
The tie vote means the controversial rezoning proposal goes to council without a recommendation from the planning commissioners.
Some residents of the rural area have said they don’t want commercial development on the site. They can shop at businesses in Blythewood or along Killian Road, the opponents said.