The Charleston City Council last night deferred its first reading of a proposed ordinance to add a zoning "overlay district" on the Sergeant Jasper site.
The controversial measure had last week been criticized by John Darby, president and CEO of The Beach Company, which owns the property. According to Darby, the proposed measure did not reflect the good-faith conversations that had taken place between his company and the city.
He cheered last night's decision to defer on the ordinance.
“After talking it over earlier today, all parties involved agree it was the best thing to do. It is important to get this right,” said Darby. “The Beach Company looks forward to continued collaboration with the City on the future plans for Sergeant Jasper.”
Darby has previously noted that continued delays caused by the city on the Sergeant Jasper project are adding additional costs to the project and sending a "loud message to investors that their property rights are not safe in Charleston."
According to court filings, The Beach Company had spent $2.3 million on consulting and demolition preparation for the Sergeant Jasper site, as well as incurring almost $2 million per year in revenue for the empty building, as of October 2015.
Those costs have no doubt risen in the five months since those filings were made.