Rapidly spreading self storage units could be restricted in Charlotte area

Rock Hill city leaders considering putting a pause on opening of new storage units

ROCK HILL, S.C. — The Charlotte area has seen an explosion of storage unit businesses. Many of them are going up on main roads on prime real estate.

They seem to be popping up everywhere.

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Monday night, Rock Hill City Council took up a measure that could restrict them.

Celanese Road in Rock Hill has several self storage places. A few have been in place for years, others, only months or even weeks.

One that opened in June at Celanese near India Hook Road is already 40 percent full, according to employees there. Another just opened three weeks ago at Celanese and Heckle Boulevard and Rawlinson Road.

For some., like Brady Buckley, it is too much all in one place. Buckley lives in Charlotte and commutes to Rock Hill for work. He said the spread of storage units is becoming a problem.

"I just see the explosion of self storage units in nice areas, that bring down the value of those areas," Buckley said. "I think we need to look at the bigger picture. Do we have too much stuff?"

After recent complaints, the city of Rock Hill will consider managing the spread of self storage units.

The ordinance states:

"The City has seen an increase in the number of self-storage facilities constructed in the past several years. Such uses are now being proposed at major intersections and on key, high visibility sites. The development of these facilities on such sites is contrary to aspects of the City’s established plans and policies." 

The proposed moratorium as such business states:

"The proposed moratorium will allow the City to have adequate time and opportunity to study and comprehensively analyze what revisions to the Zoning Ordinance and Zoning Map of the City of Rock Hill, are necessary in order to ensure that self-storage and mini-warehousing are zoned appropriately to prevent having a negative impact on the overall character of the community as well as avoiding unanticipated consequences that development of self storage and mini-warehousing uses and structures may have on existing and anticipated projects."

But, some say, they never even notice them. Kim Lawrence questioned what else should be built on empty properties.

"We have more than enough fast food places. More than enough grocery stores. What do people want to see built?" Lawrence said. "If there's a market for it and as long as people are using it, I saw build it."

Channel 9 reached out to the owners of several self storage businesses on Monday. None of them returned phone calls or emails about the city's proposals.

Some of the proposed restrictions include limiting storage units to industrial areas, away from major retail, and traffic corridors.

If the council vote passes Monday, it must have two more readings before it passes.

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