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Columbia residents concerned about losing history with new development

A developer is looking to add 31 new units in the area.
Credit: Valerie James

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A developer is looking to add 31 new apartments in the Kilbourne neighborhood of Columbia, but there are concerns about what it may bring to the community - and what it could take away.

Dangerous traffic, parking issues, and overpopulation are a few of the concerns listed on flyers posted on Overbrook Drive.

Jeffrey Scott is the pastor at Calvary Baptist Church and is among those with concerns.

“The infrastructure for the water system won’t hold it. Pipes around here bust all the time in the streets," Pastor Scott said. "Additional parking, we get a lot of overflow parking in our parking lot.”

Aside from those problems, Pastor Scott and Valerie James, who’s lived in the neighborhood her whole life, said the development could erase generations of history.

“The house was built by a man named Mr. Raybourne. He was a contractor and he had one of the first houses in this little area. His son and grandson lived in that house," James said.

Shortly after the last Raybourne passed away, the developer for the new apartments purchased the property.

Columbia’s Planning Commission presented the proposal this week to tear down the home to build the apartments.

Scott added that another apartment complex could change the structure of the neighborhood.

“You know, keep it where we are and my goal is to keep it a G-rated community,” he said.

If you’d like to voice your opinion about the new development, you can on Feb. 7  at the upcoming meeting.

The final reading for the project is on Feb. 21.

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