Bobby McCree III

(Rock Hill, S.C.) — The Rock Hill City Council has temporarily restricted the number of self-storage businesses within the city limits.

The city council voted Nov. 12 to put a 180-day moratorium on new storage facilities and limits where they could be built in the future. The decision comes after a preliminary vote on the issue Oct. 22.

Celanese Road contains several self-storage sites and some of the facilities have been in place for years, while others, only a few weeks or months. One new storage facility near the corner of Rawlinson Road and Heckle Boulevard opened a month ago.

“How does this affect our plans? How does this affect our community? How does this affect our neighborhood? How many housing developments, apartment complexes or storage units do you want all around you,” asked Sandra Oborokumo, a member of the Rock Hill City Council.

The rapidly-spreading businesses have caused some people to complain, which encouraged the city council to take action.

“Some of the storage units that I’ve seen are always not up to par and up to city code standards or county code standards. They can become a very sore eye and can depreciate your property value,” said Oliver Parmley, who works in Rock Hill.

“We need to limit the number of storage units that are being built especially around the residential areas. We do not need an overflow or abundance of them.”

One concern, according to Oborokumo, is that many of the storage businesses were popping up at major intersections and other high visibility locations.

“It also affects your quality of life because you might have people coming and going and getting stuff, disrupting your peace. If it’s not looked at and stopped, then storage units could impede foot traffic coming into Rock Hill,” said Oborokumo.

However, some people say they can tolerate the growing number of storage units.

“They are going where the money is,” said Katura Jackson, who works in Rock Hill. “Just like the fast-food places that take up the empty storefronts, storage units will do the same. It’s a business after all.”

Recently, Madison Capital, a Charlotte-based self-storage and apartment development company, bought the 90,000-square-foot Kmart Plaza on Cherry Road for $6 million.

The Palmetto Report reached out to a number of self-storage businesses, but they did not immediately return calls or declined comment.