F’ville triples home permits over last year

These are a few of the houses at Grove Park subdivision off Ga. Highway 314 in Fayetteville that just over a year ago were vacant lots. The nearly built-out subdivision is indicative of the large increase in single-family residential permits issued in the city in the past six months. Photo/Ben Nelms.

ayetteville is beginning to see a reversal of fortunes and it is not just with the arrival of Pinewood Atlanta Studios. The city through the first six months of 2013 issued nearly 100 permits for single-family home construction. That compares to a total of 38 permits issued in all of 2012 and only 4 permits issued in 2011.

Like other areas of Fayette County, Fayetteville in recent months has witnessed the beginning of an economic turnaround in a reversal of several years of the Great Recession. Fayetteville actually fared worse than the county’s other municipalities, losing more than 26 percent of the value of real property over a three-year period. But that was then and this is now.

Fayetteville Community Development Director Brian Wismer said 98 permits for single-family home construction were issued during the first six months of 2013. Put in perspective, there were only four permits issued in all of 2011 and only 38 issued during 2012.

“We’re very pleasantly surprised at how quickly some of the subdivisions are filling up,” Wismer said Monday, noting that just a year ago he thought the current level of residential building activity was some five years away. “I don’t know if it’s an indicator of something larger, but we are happy to be filling the vacant lots.”

Wismer said there were approximately 350 vacant lots across the city a year ago, while today that number has decreased to 250.

Wismer also noted that the residential activity is not limited to one or two areas, but is in evidence on the north, east and south sides of the city. Also of note, Wismer said, is that the construction activity is for residences under contract as opposed to spec homes, those built in hopes of attracting a buyer.

A sampling of the residential activity includes new home construction in Grove Park on the north side, Legends on Redwine and Bellemeade on the south side and Dixon Springs, Clifton Springs and Sheffield Estates on the city’s east side.

Fayetteville is also the epicenter for the unfolding of what is arguably the largest economic development in the history of Fayette County: the entry of Pinewood Atlanta Studios and the annexation in the coming weeks of approximately 1,200 acres on the city’s west side that will be home to the studio and a variety of other types of development.

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