More apartments have been cleared in Downtown Clemson | Clemson News
Clemson – It may not be what full-time residents want, but downtown Clemson will get another mixed-use apartment building after the council voted in favor of the development.
Developers from the developer Signet first proposed a seven-story building with an underground parking. In preparation for the final decision at the council meeting held on August 21, the developer has been slowly reducing the building’s height and footprint in response to concerns.
Located at what is now 408 and 412 College Avenue – next door to Hubbard Young’s Pharmacy – the Signet project stands out in one way from the apartments next door.
It will be rented by unit, not by bedroom, even though it is within walking distance of the Clemson University campus.
Principal Andy Blondeau told the council: “It is within the Catalyst and while we cannot prevent students from living there, it is being developed and marketed as non-student accommodation.”
The Signet development is located on the edge of the “Uptown” district, which the city has identified as the next focus area for redevelopment. The original plans called for a mix of student and non-student housing in the area.
“Everything that’s going on here is part of a plan – a very expensive plan – that was implemented three years ago,” Blondeau said.
The vote came as students returned to the area on the first day of term, prompting a council member to comment that residents often complain about developers who only cater to students rather than those who are there all year.
“We have promised residents for many years that residents will benefit from this overdevelopment in certain areas,” said Catherine Watt. “We need to make sure that we communicate the benefits to residents. The university has given up its ability to build housing on campus and somehow we have become the department of university housing.
And those benefits, she said, can’t just be an increase in the tax base and the possibility of walking.
The property was previously zoned for commercial development, meaning it would have been a smaller version of student accommodation. As far as he’s seen it during his years of serving the city, Councilor John Duckworth said Signet did the best job of taking and responding to community feedback.
The university’s long-term plans include building additional spaces in the Duthette Hills community after the $155 million renovation of Bryan Mall, according to university spokesperson Joe Galbraith.
The plans were initially presented to the City Planning Commission in December 2022.