Planning Commission hears south 74 annexation request
Does PTC need another subdivision?
Instead of voting on a proposed annexation off Ga. Highway 74 South near the Meade Field sports complex, the Peachtree City Planning Commission spent three hours Monday night learning more about the proposal and debating its merits.
Ultimately the commission decided to seek more information from developer Southern Pines Plantation and reconvene to vote on the request at a special called meeting later this month.
The commission’s vote is one of recommendation only, as the final say on the annexation rests with the Peachtree City Council.
A separate proposal advocating the rezoning of industrial property near Falcon Field Airport was postponed and will be considered by the commission at its Oct. 8 meeting.
Southern Pines Plantation is proposing a 90-home subdivision called “The Gates” on 77 acres located at the intersection of Hwy. 74 South and Redwine Road. Also on the property would be four acres at the entrance dedicated to two office buildings of about 10,000 square feet each.
The property is currently in the unincorporated county, zoned several years ago for 135,000 sq. ft. of commercial development, including a regional “big box” store, along with 41,000 sq. ft. of office space.
The proposed net density, after removing all the undevelopable land and the office parcel, is 2.5 lots per acre, which is similar to other nearby subdivisions in the Braelinn Village area, said City Planner David Rast.
One of the planning commission’s main concerns was the elimination of several pocket parks from the site plan, and SPP said it would add them back in.
Several commissioners were also adamant about locking SPP in to a certain funding amount for linking to a nearby path tunnel underneath Hwy. 74, for a city “gateway” sign along the highway and perhaps the construction of restrooms at the adjacent Meade Field park.
Potentially more significant is a request to determine how much annexing the development would cost the city in terms of services from public safety to maintenance.
Peachtree City resident Josh Bloom said he opposed the zoning for the site, noting that the city needs more prospective space for corporate headquarters instead of a new subdivision that would “consume more in services than they pay in taxes.” Bloom said he felt the subdivision would further stretch the city’s fire and police services.
Commissioner Frank Destadio said that since the city has significant leverage over an annexation, he wants to make sure all of the developer’s contributions will be in writing so the city can guarantee it will get what it is promised.
SPP attorney David Kirk noted that part of the problem is a lack of clarity over the cost of the sewer access for the property, since an adjoining property owner who was to initially contribute toward such a system may choose a different solution instead.
Destadio also recommended strongly that the City Council require a traffic study be conducted before it would vote on the annexation proposal.
Commissioner Aaron Daily said his main concern was the removal of the pocket parks, which he had asked to be improved at the commission’s workshop meeting last month. With the parks gone, Daily said he couldn’t vote in favor of the annexation.
It was noted that even if council approves the annexation, the site plan, landscape plan and the traditional planning process will all be conducted as usual through the planning commission.
SPP has committed to providing a 50-foot greenbelt around the perimeter of the property so the city can maintain control over any future extensions of the sewer system, and the sewer mains will be located 200 feet from the nearest property line for the same reason, officials said.
SPP also has committed to donating a 60-foot greenbelt along Hwy. 74 to the city and to landscape the entrance so it is similar to the landscaped office buildings on the other side of Hwy. 74.