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City of Camden looking to develop former Camden Elementary School lot

The site of the former Camden Elementary School has now been empty for almost two years.

KERSHAW COUNTY, S.C. — On the corner of Lyttleton and Laurens Street in Camden sits an empty lot. It's the former site of the old Camden Elementary School. 

The school building was torn down back in 2019 and moved to another location. Now, years later, it's being considered for a new purpose. 

"What we're asking for is for developers to submit proposals on how they would redevelop the property, so, in this case, what they would do is submit a sketch plan, which would show how they propose to lay lots out, what the size of the lots would be and provide elevation and photographs depicting what the houses would look like," Camden City Planner Shawn Putnam said.

Putnam explains the area is zoned for single-family housing, which he says is needed. "Based on the maximum allowed density for the zoning district you're looking at, probably fifteen to sixteen houses, we're still seeing a significant housing shortage in the county, so the more houses we can get the better," Putnam said. "The demand is still far outstripping the supply available." 

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Camden resident Wanda Blakney says whether she is in favor of the homes depends on how much they cost. 

"I think it all depends on how much these houses are gonna cost," Blakney said. "Everything is in an uproar, you know, and it all depends. There are people who cannot afford expensive homes, as simple as that." 

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As of now, the city has had no proposals submitted but they are accepting them until August 15th. If they don't get any, Putnam says, "We'll have to step back and evaluate." 

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