Twenty people have been appointed to an advisory committee to pick over Beaufort's future development code.
It will take the group about six months to review the "form-based code" -- a joint venture between the city, Beaufort County and the town of Port Royal -- and send it to City Council for a vote.
The code, unlike traditional zoning, sets rules based more on a building's appearance than its use.
Committee members were chosen for their expertise in business, land development, construction, government or grasp of neighborhood issues. They will review code that county consultant Opticos created with input from residents.
Mayor Billy Keyserling prefers to call it "Beaufort code" instead of form-based code. "I've found it doesn't scare people," he said of his favored term. "And it helps them understand the code we are going to be using is based on what is ... in Beaufort now."
The group is expected to go through the proposed code line by line and ensure new development or redevelopment melds with existing buildings, zones and neighborhoods.
Some neighborhood activists and historic preservationists fought City Council on the make-up of the proposed committee. They asked for two advisory groups -- one to address technical aspects of the code and another to address specific issues. City Council decided to stick with one committee.
"In my opinion, if you have more than one committee working on something, you're never going to get any kind of agreement because we all want what is best for our neighborhoods," said Councilwoman Donnie Beer, who is on the advisory committee.
Maxine Lutz, acting executive director for the Historic Beaufort Foundation, said she is satisfied with the board appointments, which include foundation consultant and former director Cynthia Jenkins. She also is pleased subcommittees can be formed if deemed necessary.
Keyserling said subcommittees and neighborhood meetings will be arranged as specific concerns surface in the 400-plus pages of proposed code.
Committee members and the neighborhoods and organizations they represent: