PTC says 'yes' to Wilksmoor rezoning

Wieland: 17 months to build MacDuff extension

It will take about 17 months to fully complete the MacDuff Parkway extension, which will link the road with Ga. Highway 74 north, according to officials with John Wieland Homes.

The Peachtree City Council Thursday night voted 3-1 to rezone an 88-acre tract for 208 homes near MacDuff Parkway. The vote came with a condition that only 100 homes could be built prior to completion of the road extension.

The 88 acres is located along the CSX railroad that was previously zoned for industrial development. Councilman Eric Imker, who voted against the rezoning, argued that the land should have remained available for industrial use. Mayor Vanessa Fleisch, a real estate agent, abstained from the vote, having said that she will not make any money from marketing the homes but a co-worker has signed a deal to sell Wieland homes in the area.

The road extension, which will include a bridge over the railroad tracks, will be a very welcome sight for residents in Wilksmoor Village, who currently only have one way in and out of their homes every day: Ga. Highway 54 West.

Hwy. 54 gets so clogged in the evening commute times that traffic can back up nearly two miles to the east, all the way to Willowbend Road. The city has ordered a traffic study of the entire corridor in search of solutions to help move traffic more efficiently, and that study will take into account future commercial development on the highway along with the Wieland subdivision that was rezoned Thursday night.

Wieland officials have said some of the homes will be sold above the $350,000 mark and some will eclipse $400,000. The development will have a number of pocket parks designed to be used by residents.

The parcel is home to the “Peach Pit” construction landfill, and there will be no development on that site, Wieland officials have said.

Intuitive Reasoning
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Help me understand...

Help me understand the following. MacDuff is going to take 17 months to build and completion of homes 18 months. This is right off Wieland’s own chart. Then tell me again why Wieland couldn’t just build 100 homes in their current area of 380 acres that allowed up to 485 homes to the west of MacDuff? They said they needed the money from the sale of 100 homes to fund MacDuff and couldn’t get a loan without a guarantee of homes being built and sold. That is of course not true. It comes down to how much money they were willing to spend to back a loan and/or how much collateral they were willing to put up. Instead, they got council to eliminate that risk – for free. Give them credit for portraying the poor developer card. Seems Scarbrough, the other developer, didn’t have the funding problem with exactly the same scenario. In either case, Wieland wasn’t going to see profits until after the completion of MacDuff and after selling any of the homes. I think everyone has been bamboozled by the developer including the planning commission, the city planning department, the city council and most distressing of all, Peachtree City citizens. Everyone surrendered for fear MacDuff might not be completed. Good grief, MacDuff was going to get done regardless. A couple extra months, as claimed by Wieland, wasn’t going to be a big deal. We’ve already waited 7 years. Instead, a decision was made knowing future traffic issues are sure to come – with no solution put forward.

You do realize that after MacDuff is built it will be asked to handle not just the 1125 new homes being built on the west side but also current traffic from Centennial, Cedarcroft, Camden apartments, Wynnmeade and Chadsworth, plus all the cut-through traffic by our friends in Coweta. Council knowingly just added another 500-600 homes to the mix! 204 new homes with the rezoning plus another 300-400 with the rezoning of the other land in the area to residential from what is now industrial. Council knowingly is dumping all this onto a two lane road. This is such a huge mistake I’m dumfounded. We could have waited. We could have bargained for more from the developer if they we’re truly that desperate for money. No, not only did we cave, we let them off the hook for future road improvements at MacDuff and GA54 as well as no contribution to the future widening of MacDuff to 4 lanes. Guess who’s going to have to pay for all that now? I think this is a bad decision and will mean big issues in the future.

moelarrycurly
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Weiland's "investors"

are fronting the money for Scarborough's portion of the extension.

Taxpayers will be paying for the additional 2 lanes of MacDuff extension.

NeilSullivan
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MLC there is the rub - Coweta Connector

I have been assured more than once that I am crazy, which is probably true, but the four laning of Mac Duff will be a disaster for the Mac Duff communities. How will we get out of our neighborhoods taking turns at 4 way stops with our Coweta friends cutting the corner off and avoiding 54/74.

Some say that there will be traffic calming devices, it will not matter as anyone who has traversed by Staples/ Smokey bones at rush hour can tell you humps and bumps do not stop the cars.

I cannot believe this has been approved before we have a comprehensive plan to deal with traffic in the West Village. Worse, as I recall, this land was zoned industrial when Weiland obtained it. What exactly where they going to sue for? Not bowing to Mr. Weiland? This decision is probably the worst in a while and that says a lot.

How are the working families and students of Mac Duff parkway going to get out of their neighborhoods through the parade pf Coweta county cars?

But a much better question, Weiland agreed to zero occupancy certificates until we had a bridge and a road in exchange for annexation. Why was this not given the same restriction.

Very disappointed in our leaders today.

Husband and Fat...
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Neil's rub

Neil is 100% right.

We aren't a planned community any longer. We're a reactionary community.

First we change zoning while our developmental people cry because we are running out of industrial space.

There's no traffic plan, yet this area of the city gets the most complaints.

Is there a study of emergency services or school?

I certainly hope leadership isnt reacting to any developers threats over the road.

NeilSullivan
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H&F barely rubbing the surface

We can frame this thread for when the council, commission, et al come back in a few years and says that we need to do something about the traffic in the West Village. This will be after their actions will have the impact of doing things to the traffic in the West Village. That's right boys and girls, that hand in the air says aye responsible for the coming mess.

1 ) Current Mac Duff has two cart crossings. How will these be handled by 2 or 4 lane Mac Duff? We already know from experience on Huddleston that Coweta drivers do not respect the golf carts or act reasonably around them.

2 ) There are currently 4 school bus stops on Mac Duff. Will this be safe on the Coweta Connector?

3 ) There are sereral hundred homes going up and PTC elem is full so is Kedron. Better a straight line regression of current school attendence (before Weiland builds his houses) indicates a surge that would push MHS up past 1700 which it cannot hold by 2017. What is the plan? Shouldn't we think that through?

4 ) Mr. Ross's Visioning says we need more young families, yet Mr. Weiland says we need more 400k mini mansions. Doesn't or likely didn't our council have some leverage to get a desirable set of housing options in exchange for zoning. Sorry a kite park doesn't cut it.

5 ) The other domino is Wynnmeade. Its a matter of time before gentrification happens. Should we not have strong plans in place now?

End of the day, I know we have smart council people but I really wonder how this decision got made. The good news is Weiland isn't going to sue us, the bad news is the City will get sued when someone gets really hurt or killed due to this really poor planning.

n

momofthreeboys
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I don't agree with the

I don't agree with the rezoning but if you look at the BOE map I think it looks like all those new houses are zoned for Flat Rock/Sandy Creek. I believe they have the space at those two schools for the new kids. I just hope it doesn't cause another redistricting.

Husband and Fat...
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Informed Decisions?

No traffic study? No study on the effect of schools, emergency service?

Is city council making informed decisions or are they making decisions based on the threat of a lawsuit?

Can someone educate me on realtor payments, but with Wieland selecting the mayors firm to sell the houses, won't the firm profit and possibly provide bonuses to their employees and not just the listed seller?

Is the city's viability going to be ok long term with the removal of yet more industrial space?

Couldn't make the meeting or watch on tv. What did Learnard have to say about building homes geared toward more senior couples, in lieu of following the Visions quest for families?

mudcat
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Hard to imagine $8million profit in only 100 homes

But I guess they know what they are doing - building the bridge and the road upfront. Sure will increase the value of the rest of the property - and even help Centennial.

The realtor compensation thing is not a conflict at all. The realtor who is selling the houses and even Vanessa herself are independent contractors, not employees and it would be almost impossible for any of the Wieland listing fees to be paid to Vanessa. Keller Williams does however have a mini-pyramid scheme going with a team structure and even some promises about funding retirement accounts if everybody is profitable for 5 years or something like that. Most of that is just pie in the sky, but a truly determined lawyer could probably allege (but not prove) that Vanessa's retirement account was partially funded by some of the profits from Wieland's listing fees. That's why she abstained. That and the fact that the votes were there without her.

The Wieland guy did distance himself from the age range nonsense by saying it was open to all. Not sure if it lingers in the zoning language or not.

I understand how morning traffic jams at 54/74 may be helped by MacDuff extension because you are giving the departing people to the north 2 ways out - and even they will meet again at I-85. But in the evening, all you are doing is giving south and westbound people 2 ways to get to the same spot on Hwy. 54 west. Sure, you can subtract the people that live in Wilkesmoor, but is that enough to make a difference? I don't think so but let's spend $8million and find out. Its not our money.

borntorun
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MacDuff Parkway Extension

Will extending MacDuff Parkway help with traffic? Possibly a tad during the morning commute. But overall not a lot really and absolutely zilch during the afternoon commute with the biggest problem being folks who work in the Industrial Park trying to get back to Coweta County. Until there is some way to offer an alternate route back to Coweta other than through the 54/74 intersection, nothing is going to help. Too late now and I know I'm in the minority but I still think extending TDK Boulevard offered the best option. Yeah, I know....if it had been built, some guy was going to build the second coming of NYC over in Coweta. Personally I think a lot of that was overblown but again its a moot point now. But until the Coweta County Industrial Park worker issued is solved, I don't see a whole lot of relief.

Spyglass
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TDK should have been built..

Or at least some other access point. Until someone stands up and addresses the Gorilla in the room traffic issue will never be solved. We do not have enough Fayette//Coweta access points, PERIOD.

Husband and Fat...
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Mud

So when a developer is selecting an agent, he might interview several people from each firm to represent 100-300 houses he's planning to build?

Then this one independent realtor shares the profit with her home company for supplying resources?

I don't know but selling that many houses sounds like a lot of legwork for one person. Don't they get help from fellow agents and others in their home office?

If an office is profitable, don't they provide incentives and bonuses to staff that help?

Spyglass
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When you said I don't know

You said a lot, in both posts trying to somehow tie the Mayor to profits, bonuses...Mud explains it well below.

mudcat
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It is certainly more than just one person can handle

He or she is probably a team leader with 3 or 4 underlings and they will be the ones sitting in the model home. And the 100-300 houses are not sold all at once, it is probably over a 2 or 3 year period assuming a good economy.

The office is always profitable because they push the expensive items like advertising and model homes back on the realtor and builder. Incentives and bonuses from the office - never. Of course you have to realize that even the most productive real estate offices make a very small % profit on each transaction, probably 3 or 4% of the total commission collected which is probably 2% of the sales price, so it is peanuts. You can't equate the real estate business with a typical company that actually produces something and has stockholders and a management team receiving salary, benefits, bonus, stock options, etc. Or if you do, you are looking at the top of the structure at a national or regional level, many steps above the realtor you meet on the street.

All this hoopla about realtors getting rich because of 6 and 7% commissions doesn't take into account the splits with other real estate companies, advertising costs, franchise fees, transaction fees and the fees the realtor has to pay to the company for back office overhead - and they have to split their commission with the company as well. Terrible business, especially now, unless you have a relationship with Wieland or a bank and even then the realtor has to provide full service at a discounted commission because of competition.

Husband and Fat...
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Gotcha sister

much clearer explaination

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