Archive for January, 2009

Fayette County Approves Land Use Amendment For Business Technology Park Subject To Tyrone’s Approval

The Fayette County Board of Commissioners approved amendments to land use plans to allow construction of a business technology park on the west side of S.R. 74, which would be a mix of industrial research and development offices and a small amount of light commercial services, such as salons and small restaurants.  The amendment is  contingent on the town of Tyrone’s approval of the changes.

Commissioner Eric Maxwell refused to back the amendments plan and said the only benefit would be the creation of jobs.

“To suggest that putting commercial development on the highway just on the southside of Fairburn where it’s already an abomination and say that that’s going to help out traffic is absolutely ridiculous,” said Maxwell. “I believe that at this point you can tell the difference going from Fayette County to Fairburn and in four years if this thing is passed and the economy turns around you will not know the difference between Fulton County and Fayette County.”

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Doraville Annexation Fails

Residents in the Cherokee Hills, Oakcliff Estates and Sequoyah Woods subdivisions overwhelmingly rejected a referendum to become part of Doraville.  Seventy-nine percent opposed the second annexation vote  – which would have boosted Doraville’s population by about 65 percent to 17,000 residents.

The November annexation vote failed by just 34 votes, but was marred by ballot problems, prompting the second vote.

Avondale Estates To Vote On Conditional Permit For Publix-Anchored Mixed-Use Project

The Avondale Estates City Council votes tonight on a conditional permit to allow development of a mixed-use project anchored by Publix at a four-block area just east from its Tudor-style downtown.  The public meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Avondale City Hall in North Avondale Plaza.

Neighborhood Negotiating Code of Conduct Agreement with Buckhead Nightclub Kolor

Residents with Peachtree Park Civic Association are negotiating a code of conduct contract with radio personality Frank Ski’s Kolor, a high-end night club and restaurant seeking a permanent address in Buckhead.

If approved, the club would be located in the Buckhead Square shopping center at the corner of Peachtree Road and Piedmont Avenue. Kolor’s 15,000-square-foot facility, if built, will face the wooded backyards of homes in the neighborhood.

Kolor faces united opposition from its neighbors.  NPU-B recommended denial of a liquor license and both Buckhead Forest Civic Associationand Peachtree Park Civic Association have vowed to oppose the club’s opening.

Negoitations between the club and the neighbors are scheduled to end January 31.

Roswell Rejects Controversial Cell Tower

Looking down the double-barrel of a petition signed by 341 citizens and a crowded room, the Roswell City Council unanimously rejected a plan to allow cell towers at the fire station on Jones Road and Lake Charles Drive.  T-Mobile South applied to the city to lease land at the fire station to erect a 150-foot cell tower.

Government and public properties are currently acceptable sites for cell towers under the city’s zoning ordinance.  On February 9, the City Council will vote on amendment to  the wireless communication facility master plan striking the fire station from the list of acceptable sites for cell towers and will approve existing cell towers in annexed areas, commercial and industrial zoning and government sites.

Cartersville Grants Variance For Digital Billboard On MLK

Drivers along the US 41 Corridor can expect to see a new high-tech digital billboard within the city limits of Cartersville  with the approval of a variance.  Cartersville Board of Zoning Appeals has approved a variance to allow the digital billboard even though it does not meet the city’s sign ordinance.  The sign will also be slightly bigger than the regulated 300 square feet allowed by the city and closer to the roadway than the required setback of at least 100 feet.

The new billboard will would be located about 15 feet somewhere along a 3.39 acre plot of land on a stretch of N. Morningside Drive, near Martin Luther King Jr. Drive.

DeKalb County Drafting A New Zoning Ordinance To Recognize New Urbanism

Our code dates back from the 1950s with an update in the ’90s,” District 6 County Commissioner Kathie Gannon said. “We have no code to fit the kind of development we want in DeKalb County.”   “[The current code] is a very suburban code. We need something that matches our urban setting,” she said.

To recognize DeKalb’s new urbanism, the county hired Atlanta-based engineering, planning and construction management firm Pond & Co. to oversee the zoning law makeover.

As the law stands now, if a developer wants to construct a large mixed-use development — for example, to combine residential and retail in a manner similar to Atlanta’s Atlantic Station — a developer must make multiple zoning applications in DeKalb.

Special land use permits are required to build anything typically taller than three stories. Variances are needed for everything from parking to sidewalks and street buffers and must go through the zoning Board of Appeals.

The new code should streamline the process.  “The code is being rewritten to implement the vision of the adopted 2007 DeKalb County Comprehensive Plan which encourages mixed use activity centers and encourages redevelopment of declining commercial corridors while protecting established single-family neighborhoods,” said DeKalb County spokeswoman Kristie Swink.

The first draft of the new code will be released in mid-February.