The AJC reports that Suwanee wants the last 4 acre residential holdout in the Suwanee Gateway on four-lane Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road to be preserved as park land to save old oak trees and project a positive image for the commercial corridor off I-85. The problem, Suwanee does not have any intention to purchase the property. Instead, Suwanee development staff recommend denying a rezoning application and special use permit for the property that would allow a gas station and car wash. Such action would require the elderly owners to permanently maintain the property as residential, even though they no longer live there.
Attorney Michael Sullivan, who represents QuikTrip seeking the rezoning said:
“It’s unfair for this city to designate land as a park if the city has no intention of purchasing it,” Sullivan said. “All that does is force an elderly couple to pay taxes and maintenance on land they don’t have the benefit of living on.”
While city staff oppose the rezoning, Mayor Dave Williams supports rezoning of the property, but has not made a decision on the special-use permit to allow the car wash.
“Whenever you have a rezoning, there are going to be some people opposed to any change,” Williams said. “In this case, the people objecting want it to remain exactly as it is today but aren’t interested in buying the property to protect it. That is a solution I would welcome.”