3 new PTC members, 2 hot issues for council

Tue, 01/05/2010 - 4:53pm
By: John Munford

A request to up-size one building in a shopping center on Ga. Highway 54 West from 50,000 to 65,000 square feet will be considered Thursday night by the Peachtree City Council.

The request will come before a newly constituted City Council that includes three brand-new members. Council’s only experience comes from holdover Doug Sturbaum, who is in the third year of his four-year term, and new Mayor Don Haddix, who served a year and a half in his council seat before resigning in August to run for mayor.

Each of the new council members, along with Haddix, have expressed a preference to divert city development away from big box stores to help business in the city’s various village retail centers.

Capital City Development, in a letter from attorney Rick Lindsey, is asking the city to allow its two other large buildings to remain capped at 50,000 square feet. But CCD partner Doug McMurrain told The Citizen recently that the company would be willing to give up the 50,000-square-foot stores in order to secure the 65,000-square-foot store.

McMurrain has said the 65,000-square-foot store would be comparable to the largest grocery store in town. CCD has courted Kohl’s Department Store for the space along with Academy Sports and a potential movie theater.

According to city staff, if council agrees to the change CCD will have to apply for an amendment to its special use permit for the site and the existing development agreement between CCD and the city will have to be amended. Staff would review the request as part of the special use permit request, according to Community Development Director David Rast.

With the recent announcement of a movie theater coming barely over a mile down the road in a mega development located in Coweta County, the prospects of a different movie company coming to Peachtree City may have dimmed. The Coweta development, dubbed Fischer Crossings, also has signed on a Sam’s Wholesale Club.

Capital City’s Line Creek shopping center, which abuts Cardiff Park at the rear, is already zoned for general commercial development. The city negotiated buffer improvements along Cardiff Park and Planterra Way as part of the development agreement for the site.

The City Council nearly two years ago agreed to sell publicly-owned Line Creek Drive and Line Creek Circle at CCD’s request. Without the streets, the city’s setback regulations would not have allowed enough room for large stores on the site.

CCD has yet to formally purchase the streets though it has agreed to pay at least $500,000 for the property depending on the appraisal of the land. If the streets appraise for a higher figure, CCD has committed to giving the city an equivalent amount of land from its site that abuts the Line Creek Nature Area.

The Line Creek shopping center will be served by a traffic light on Hwy. 54 West that was approved by the Georgia Department of Transportation after the City Council intervened on CCD’s behalf.

That light will be between the existing lights for Planterra Way and MacDuff Parkway. Prior to the city’s intervention, DOT had turned down CCD’s request for the traffic light on two previous occasions, citing its proximity to the existing Planterra and MacDuff lights.

In other business, council is expected to vote on a request to annex 48 acres on the city’s eastern border just south of Ga. Highway 54 east for a 21-home subdivision. The request involves two parcels: one on either side of Camp Creek.

The parcels are located east of Peachtree City United Methodist Church and Hyde Investment Group wants to develop it as an “extension” of the existing Hyde Park subdivision.

The city’s Planning Commission last month voted to recommend to the City Council that the annexation be denied. One of the commission’s main concerns was due to a lack of access to the site, which is zoned agricultural-residential in unincorporated Fayette County.

Hyde was proposing to replace an existing cart path section off Carriage Lane in the existing Hyde Park subdivision with a two-lane road. That concept alone drew criticism from neighbors who urged the commission to vote down the proposal.

Hyde representative Mike Lorber said the plan called for an extension of Stagecoach Road, with two separate roads to serve the site.

Hyde is proposing to build homes with an average sale price of about $800,000 each on lots of two acres or more.

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Submitted by MYTMITE on Wed, 01/06/2010 - 3:32pm.

We believed you and voted you into office and now it's time to step us and show us it is not more of the same. Vote NO on giving the okay to a bigger box store. Unless this is a Whole Foods and I don't believe their stores are that big-- we do not need a big or bigger box store. Let this be the start of getting back to our village concept.

mudcat's picture
Submitted by mudcat on Wed, 01/06/2010 - 7:05am.

You are quoting from a lawyer's letter and your competition interviewed Darth McMurrain who said 2 very interesting things. First, a no vote Thursday kills the project (Yea!) and secondly, he wants to change our system and go over the heads of the council and survey all PTC residents - not just the voters, mind you - all PTC residents and ask them if they want quality retail and an upscale grocery store.

Wow, zoning by Democracy. Just what our founding fathers had in mind. Can we rid ourselves of this evil developer? Please?

Mr Hyde on the other hand has a good project and it won't hurt PTC a bit. or will it get built until I'm 70 years old. $800,000 houses, come on.

Steve Brown's picture
Submitted by Steve Brown on Wed, 01/06/2010 - 10:28am.

When Robert W. Morgan makes statements like, "The best city attorney ever, Rick Lindsey," I am left wondering whether he is not still suffering some sort of New Year's hangover.

Well, I guess we can look at the facts, and agree to be on opposite ends of the spectrum on this one.

Evil Elvis's picture
Submitted by Evil Elvis on Thu, 01/07/2010 - 8:00am.

Is your 20,000 word treatise on why no horses were shot with arrows during your watch completed? Thecitizen.com is loading quickly lately. Time for you to clog the pipe.

Robert W. Morgan's picture
Submitted by Robert W. Morgan on Thu, 01/07/2010 - 7:34am.

Now that I have done that, here goes:

Rick Lindsey , one of the best two city attorneys ever , the other being Jim Webb ........, etc.

Now, I have it 100% correct and no one who understands the true role of a city atorney could dispute those facts. Full disclosure, Mr. Webb has represented me on two different occasions - I (rather he) prevailed both times.

Just in case there may be someone out there who is unclear about the role of a city attorney, I will tell you. A city atorney works for the benefit of the city, not the mayor or any council member. He (or she) is charged with upholding the law, keeping the city out of lawsuits and advising the mayor and council on the legality of proposed ordinances and actions before they vote. A mayor and council that chooses to ignore a city attorney's advice or an out of control elected official that brainstorms with an attorney about how to sneak something by that satisfies that official's personal or political agenda in no way has anything to do with the performance of a city attorney. In fact, a city attorney who tells part-time city level politicians things they don't want to hear probably gets high marks for doing his (or her) job.

Believe me Mr. Brown, you don't want to pursue this argument - just say OK and move on.

Regardless of how you or anyone else feels about Mr. Lindsey, the facts are impossible to ignore. He is a very capable attorney, he has insider knowledge of the laws and ordinances and procedures of Peachtree City - which he learned at taxpayer expense before being forced out and he's on the other side of an issue from most thinking Peachtree City people. Believe me, it is better for the city when a know-nothing attorney with too-tight suits named Doug from Atlanta comes down and blows his hot air all over the place, Doug at least loses and goes away - or in some cases he intimidates a rookie mayor and council and gets a partial settlement (sound familiar?) Lindsey won't lose and he won't run.

Thanks. Good job, brownie.

Robert W. Morgan's picture
Submitted by Robert W. Morgan on Wed, 01/06/2010 - 6:00am.

Here we have an issue that is a clear no vote for the new council. In fact, they have a chance to undo the traffic light and the street selling scam, but no, not now. And who do we have to thank for all that?

Steve Brown, that's who. The best city attorney ever, Rick Lindsey was first ignored by Brown and his cronies (illegal moratorium at their first meeting) and later forced out simply because he represented the old regime and worst of all, may have been friends with Bob Lenox.

Now we have Lindsey who is a very capable attorney with a complete and full knowledge of all city rules and regulations and procedures on the other side. Great. Thanks brownie.

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