Colleton County, South Carolina is located in the heart of a National Wildlife Refuge and National Estuarine Research Center that encompasses a total of 350,000 acres primarily across Beaufort, Charleston, and Colleton counties.  In 2009, Benchmark prepared the 10-year Comprehensive Plan update that led to the rewrite of the County’s Zoning and Land Development Ordinance.  The new land use regulations, prepared by Benchmark, were adopted in 2010 and included diagrams and illustrations to demonstrate the intent of the ordinance in a visual manner. 

In 2018, the County retained the services of Benchmark to prepare the current 10-year update to the Comprehensive Plan.  The process has included stakeholder meetings, a public survey and public meetings at three locations across the county.  The plan update is a joint plan, including the Town of Cottageville’s jurisdiction.    An emphasis was placed on protecting the County’s natural resources and sense of place, directing growth toward the county’s municipalities where infrastructure can accommodate development. The plan was adopted in January of 2020.