Mayor: ‘It looks like a landfill’

Tue, 07/10/2007 - 4:22pm
By: John Thompson

“It’s been a problem child for us. It looks like a landfill,” said Peachtree City Mayor Harold Logsdon.

That blunt assessment Monday night of the Lexington Circle development in Peachtree City set the tone for what many residents and city officials hope will soon be a renaissance of the area.

The joint meeting among the City Council, Planning Commission and Development Authority was called to deal with the troubling lack of development and general unsightliness of a development on Ga. Highway 54 that was supposed to provide a unique entryway to Peachtree City when it was rezoned in 2000.

Development Authority member Todd Strickland said the vacant property presents a “fear of the unknown,” and the authority, along with the Planning Commission Monday, grappled with creating a design that would guide future development in the area near McIntosh High School and Holy Trinity Catholic Church.

“This design is purely conceptual, but I think it’s spending tax dollars in a very good way,” he said.

The design, outlined by architect Roberto Parades, features a vastly improved streetscape and mixed-use development in the northwest corner of the corridor. Parades envisions a small retail or office on the bottom floor of a three-story building, with the owner living in the two stories above the business.

“We need to create a Main Street feel,” he said. The smallest buildings would have 1,000 square feet of office or retail on the bottom floor, with 2,000 square feet of living space above the office.

“This creates what Peachtree City does not have — an urban village,” said Todd Strickland.

City planner David Rast offered an overview of the project. In 2000, the four parcels that comprised the 73-acre tract were rezoned LUC 16 and a cap of 300,000 square feet of retail, restaurants and office space was put on the development.

But, since the development has started, only about 50,000 square feet of the available space has been finished, but all the designated residential component has been completed. Any further residential building in the development would require a rezoning.

“Has any research been done to see if this will work in Peachtree City? This mirrors what I have seen in Vinings, but we’re way further on the southside,” said Councilman Steve Boone.

Strickland said the proposed type of development has not been done in Peachtree City before, but he doesn’t know if there’s a pent-up demand for the mixed-use concept.

“We’re not doing anything that hasn’t been done well elsewhere,” he said.

Councilwoman Cyndi Plunkett’s main concerns are the architectural and landscape standards that she doesn’t see being upheld in the current stages of development.

Rast said there are several different agreements on the property between the city, landowners and developers and, “it’s been difficult at times to figure out what was approved. It’s a good idea that has not come to fruition.”

Homeowners were also concerned with the development.

“Those units are not selling. We’re going to end up with government housing,” said Frederick Kimball from Lexington Park.

Another resident said the existing townhomes looked like “army barracks” and said you can’t distinguish between the front and the back.

While city officials were generally in favor of the proposal, the key will be getting developers to buy into the concept.

David Rossetti, who represents the current developer, said the development does need some curb appeal, but said the developer is set on his selling price of $400,000 an acre.

In the meantime, the city’s leaders pledged to get the area cleaned up and agreed to add more residential to the project if that would help get the development moving.

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Submitted by IMNSHO on Tue, 07/10/2007 - 5:13pm.

The current "mixed use" buildings have several marks against them, and I really don't know who ever thought that particular plan was a good idea. First of all, there is the "can't tell the front from the back" thing. Neither side has ANY curb appeal. They are just plain ugly. Then there is the size of the office space. It is tiny, even for just 1 person. There is no where to put a sign announcing the business, no definitive order to where to enter or park.

I love the townhomes that are built behind the "mixed use" units. The major drawback for them, however, is having to see the nixed use units. Ugh. No thank you.

I think mixed-use development could go over very well here, if done right. But so far, this isn't it.

Robert W. Morgan's picture
Submitted by Robert W. Morgan on Thu, 07/12/2007 - 6:43am.

Those town homes, ugly as they are are going to sell very well later this year when bank takes over and puts them on the market for $175,000. Young professionals and singles will snap them up. Unfortunately, so will investors who will be renting them out. Won't help neighborhood values, but at least the overpriced liquor store next door will have lots of business. $2 a bottle more than the Korean place? Git Real. And by the way, the Rossetti family has nothing to do with those town homes.

Git Real's picture
Submitted by Git Real on Thu, 07/12/2007 - 8:14am.

Unfortunately, so will investors who will be renting them out.

Is the Section 8 business strong enough to justify buying those units for investment purposes? By chance do you know how much the gumament subsidized rentals go for monthly? I was just curious as to how much folks pay for a rental unit to justify a Section 8 subsidy return.

$2 a bottle more than the Korean place? Git Real.



"That man was Griffin Judicial Circuit District Attorney Scott Ballard".


mudcat's picture
Submitted by mudcat on Fri, 07/13/2007 - 7:07pm.

I think it is less of a difference during the week, but last Saturday I went to Katie's then to Brandon's and the same stuff was $2 cheaper at Brandon's - limited survey - only scotch and bourbon, but there it is.

So, do you like my new picture? meow

Git Real's picture
Submitted by Git Real on Fri, 07/13/2007 - 7:13pm.

Hi Mudcat!

Still mad at me? Sad


"That man was Griffin Judicial Circuit District Attorney Scott Ballard".


Submitted by McDonoughDawg on Tue, 07/10/2007 - 5:34pm.

In my opinion, they should have figured in some kind of elevators for the market they are going after. I assume empty nesters, etc. Ie folks that are thinking 10 years down the road and looking at all the steps.

mudcat's picture
Submitted by mudcat on Tue, 07/10/2007 - 6:41pm.

3 levels and the stairs in between don't make a lot of sense for the empty nester market. What is Rossetti thinking? Why would he develop something that has no chance of selling?

So, do you like my new picture? meow

Submitted by loveptc on Tue, 07/10/2007 - 8:04pm.

One unit was sold and had a family living in it. I noticed it had a "For Lease" sign up in front a few weeks ago, and the sign now is gone.
I agree about the stairs and office space. Stairs are to many, and way to steep, and the office is the size of a bedroom.

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