This week Mount Pleasant Town Council gave initial approval for a variance allowing building heights of up to 80 feet at a 30-acre parcel at Patriots Point on and near the current parking lot at the USS Yorktown. This reflects the mindset of some councilmembers as regards the future of what our town should look like. We have seen what height variances have done for the aesthetics of Coleman Boulevard and it appears we will get more of the same at Patriots Point. The developer has a significant amount of additional property at Patriots Point under lease or under option and you can bet there will be more requests for height variances. Much of this property sits on Charleston Harbor to the east of the cottages and 80-foot buildings there will change the skyline of Mount Pleasant. The 5-2 vote by council indicates that there are those that value the importance of controlling the scale of development. Councilmembers Bustos, Owens, Whitley and Mayor Haynie voted against 80-foot buildings, the rest voted to approve taller buildings. We read articles daily about the demise of Mount Pleasant’s appeal due to rampant development and this is an opportunity to minimize such development. Remember this when you go to the polls.
Community funding and resources
Thank you for printing the op-ed by Mount Pleasant Town Council Member GM Whitley. How will we pay for all our desires for Mount Pleasant? Do we need to address the most urgent need and have an urgent need tax specific to that need? I think so. The town council must address this realistically in October. We have desires vs needs and I hope voters will have a chance to vote on the two separate groups, itemized for a tax increase more in keeping with other comparable cities. We are no longer a sleepy village. We are more like a hungry roaming lion that needs some training and boundaries.
Also, for once I agreed with Richard Eckstrom, S.C. Comptroller. Our Prison System must be reformed. It is not three meals a day and a roof, for the most discouraged or sick, or mistaken or poor in society. It needs to include drug rehab, mental health needs, skills education, a GED and Pell Grants, and adequate staffing. This actually saves money in human capital and our capital. And safety for our families.
Lastly I thank our Fire Chief Gooding and her team and the MPPD Senior and Victims’ Advocates Becky and Monica, for their great service during Dorian, and for the Safe Boxes they put on Houses for Emergency Entrance, the Vial of Life Program, and Senior Center Summit Education Programs. They provide valuable resources and wisdom and support for our aging community. We are so fortunate to have such a community with this most worthwhile funding. Now this is called Necessary Funding.
E. Eugenia Felsinger