Coweta ready to vote on 2 big developments bordering PTC

Tue, 04/10/2007 - 4:30pm
By: John Thompson

As discussions continue about Fayette maintaining its slow growth rate, tomorrow night’s discussion and vote by the Coweta County Commission could be the first step in positioning a brand-new city on Fayette’s western border south of Ga. Highway 54 and placing a wastewater treatment plant near Wynn’s Pond on Peachtree City’s western city limit north of Hwy. 54.

After months of discussion and speculation, developer Tom Reese’s proposal to create McIntosh Village will have its first public hearing.

Reese is asking for 1,597 acres to be rezoned from Rural Reserve to New Communities. The property is located on McIntosh Trail in rural Coweta County, but backs up to Peachtree City. The project is due west of Falcon Field and within a mile of the southwest end of Planterra Ridge, a residential subdivision in Peachtree City.

At its build-out, projected for 2016, the new city across Line Creek 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.

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.

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 other issue that concerns Fayette residents is a proposed decentralized sewer system to be built on Fischer Road, just off Ga. Highway 34 about three miles north of the proposed McIntosh Village.

Last week, Fischer Crossings Development Group asked the County Commission to rezone a total of 40 acres on Fischer Road from Rural Reserve to C-7 Major Shopping District with a Special Use Permit. The property, adjacent to Wynn’s Pond and Wynnmeade, one of Peachtree City’s earliest subdivisions, would be the site of a decentralized wastewater treatment plant for a shopping center that has already been zoned across Ga. Highway 34.

“The comprehensive plan finds that this an appropriate measure of getting rid of wastewater and the system would be owned and operated by Newnan Utilities,” said attorney George Rosenzweig.

The attorney added the treatment facility would only service the parcel that has already been zoned for a shopping area.

The area has already been the source of controversy when earlier this year a master plan was unveiled that showed commercial development on three corners of the Fischer Road and Hwy. 34 intersection. Because the amount of commercial space was so large, it would be subject to scrutiny by regional agencies as a Development of Regional Impact since Fischers Crossing Development Group owns all four corners and released the master plan.

But later, developer Scott Seymour sent an affidavit to Coweta County saying there was no master plan and the parcel under consideration Tuesday night would only be used for the treatment plan and detention ponds.

The hearing is set for 6 p.m. tomorrow night at the Coweta County Administration Building on Perry Street in Newnan.

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Submitted by johenry on Wed, 04/11/2007 - 3:53pm.

McDonoughDawg and all the other Brown-Haters can read this article and weep. For all the previous doubters, I sure hope you get on the phone or e-mail you councilmen and let them know TDK has to stop.

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