Okatie : The Next Bluffton S.C.

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You've probably NEVER heard of Okatie. Okatie, SC lies between Bluffton and Beaufort. Sun City is actually in the Okatie SCZip code (29909)

Okatie ( along the 170 Corridor) is home to Old Field--with upscale homes, more affordable modular homes in Oaktie park and new townhomes along with a lot of newer vacant commercial buildings in Riverwalk Park.

We have tons of new homes in inventory, all along Route 170 and guess what folks, we're going to be getting more new construction--to the tune of 1252 new homes.

The Developers (Jim Robinson and LaCasa of Hilton Head)  of the new  community Okatie Village--on S.C. 170 have agreed to pay $10.7 million in fees to Beaufort County. The fee is a concession (Bribe) from both the town and the developers to get the development project approved for more commercial and residential property than is allowed under current rules

The agreement calls for Robinson and LaCassa to give Beaufort county $6.7 million for public school construction, plus $4 million for use by the county any way they see fit.

At least $1.85 million of the $4 million will go toward road improvements along S.C. 170, since Okatie Village residents would contribute to the increased traffic and deterioration of the highway.

According to the terms of the agreement  they will set aside 32 homes and 34 apartments for affordable housing. Second, 3 lots are set aside foe habitat for humanity to build 3 homes and an acre for a fire house

The developer claims that Okatie village is a new type of development that is eco-freindly where people will drive less, walk and bike more. Okatie Village would include shopping and a grocery store. .

There was only one vote against the agreement. Zoning would also change. Instead of ONE home per THREE acres, the new zoning permits 4.4 Homes per acre.

As one councilman put it: "What we're really doing is creating Okatie City along S.C. 170 ... or Bluffton 2, or whatever you want to call it."

I gotta tell ya, I think development is really good. The price point for the new homes ($185000)--I think is still too high (Okatie Park starts at $150,000--modular homes.)--but these will move--just need to get the financing. Perhaps with all that's happening now, the path will be smoother for first-time homebuyers.

I think--overall--the county has lived up to its promises, improved roads and increased services--and I am just not sure about the timing of this development. Perhaps these guys know something I don't. " Build it  and the buyers will come?" I hope so.

Posted by

John March


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