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TDK is key to getting OK for big Coweta project
Tue, 03/13/2007 - 4:56pm
By: John Thompson
The proposed — and controversial — TDK Boulevard Extension is proving to be a key to Coweta County approval of a massive city-sized development planned adjacent to Peachtree City’s western border.
Building the road from Peachtree City across Line Creek and into the currently undeveloped rural lands of eastern Coweta may become the pivot point for a rezoning request before the Coweta County Commission in less than a month.
Developer Tom Reese is asking for 1,597 acres to be rezoned from Rural Reserve to New Communities and create McIntosh Village.
At its build-out, projected for 2016, the new city across Line Creek on Peachtree City’s western limit would contain more than 600,000 square feet of office and retail space to serve more than 9,000 people in 3,000 new homes, townhomes and lofts.
In addition, several road-widening projects inside Peachtree City are being required by the state to accommodate traffic from the Coweta project.
Meanwhile, several well-known Fayette County developers are now listed as property owners adjacent or close to the proposed McIntosh Village.
During the next month, the Coweta Commission will consider a stack of information provided by its staff. After the project was announced last year, many considered the project would be a slam dunk. But after examining the staff’s reports, it appears there is no real conclusion on whether the project should be approved.
One concern came from Coweta Development Review Coordinator Ben Sewell. In a Jan. 17 memo to Zoning Administrator Angela White.
“It is my opinion that approval of this project should not be granted before the construction of both the Vernon Hunter Parkway and the extension of TDK Boulevard is underway,” Sewell wrote.
Sewell concluded his memo by suggesting the development be postponed until the highway improvements are imminent.
One of the biggest concerns comes from Coweta County Fire Chief Dennis Hammond. In a Jan. 12 letter to Planning Director Robert Tolleson, Hammond outlines his worries.
“Some of the immediate issues we face are facilities, manpower and equipment. Our current station at Turin is too small to accommodate additional equipment,” he said.
The chief also explained that Reese plans to build more than five structures that could exceed the county’s 35 feet building height requirements.
“To purchase an aerial truck and hire additional firefighters will cost approximately $1.5 million. If we build the new station within the McIntosh development that cost would be an additional $2 million for the station and equipment,” he added.
Hammond did say that Reese had agreed to donate three acres of land for a fire station, but worried that his budget would not be able to fund the costs associated with the project.
While the expansion of the bridge over Line Creek from two to four lanes has garnered most of the headlines, there are numerous other traffic improvements required by the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority that stretch from Senoia to Peachtree City. Included in the GRTA-required improvements are:
• A traffic light at the intersection of Ga. Highway 16 and Broad Street in Senoia.
• A southbound left turn ramp at the intersection of Ga. Highway 154 and Interstate 85.
• A remake of the Hwy. 74/54 intersection, the major intersection in Peachtree City. GRTA suggests adding a third northbound, southbound and westbound through lanes, along with adding a second northbound and westbound left turn lane and adding an exclusive northbound right turn lane.
• A third northbound through lane and a second westbound left turn lane at the intersection of Hwy. 74 and Peachtree Parkway, site of the Kedron Kroger-Target shopping center.
While the Coweta Planning and Zoning Department does recommend approval of the rezoning, it appears the traffic conditions will be a factor if the rezoning is approved by the County Commission.
One of the planning department’s conditions is that developer Reese be limited to building no more than 1,000 residential units and 150,000 square feet of retail and office space until the Vernon Hunter Parkway and TDK Boulevard Extension are completed. Another condition stipulates a 50-foot buffer be built when residential development exceeds the density of adjacent property.
The rezoning has drawn the attention of Fayette and Coweta residents, and the adjacent property owners reads like a Who’s Who of Fayette County.
Property owners next to the new city include Scarbrough and Rolader Development, Dan Stinchcomb, Suburban Home Sales of Atlanta and Fayette County Administration, which owns the property for the proposed Lake McIntosh, next to the development.
The hearing is set for 7 p.m. April 12 at the Coweta County Administration Building on Perry Street in Newnan.login to post comments