Barrow County’s planning commission last week backed plans for 1.1 million square feet of warehouse space to be built along Kilcrease Road near its intersection with State Route 316.

The panel recommended approval of a request by Euphoric Development of Atlanta to rezone just under 96 entirely wooded acres for a “light industrial” park on the eastern side of Kilcrease Road, where the developer plans to build four warehouse buildings to be marketed to companies looking to expand their space. No suitors for the space have been publicly announced yet.

In addition to the buildings, the site would include 176 truck parking spaces, 481 car parking spaces and three detention ponds, according to a state Developments of Regional Impact (DRI) report, which concluded that the development would be suitable for thee area.

The request now heads to the county board of commissioners for a public hearing and final vote at its meeting scheduled for Sept. 14.

If the request is approved, the project would be built in one phase with an estimated completion by the end of 2022. The project has an estimated $70 million value at buildout.

The planning commission’s recommended approval comes with several conditions, including regulations on the exterior building materials and a mandatory property owners’ association to maintain all common areas, interior streets and stormwater detention ponds.

PANEL AGAINST REQUESTS TO ALLOW LARGE SUBDIVISION IN STATHAM

Also at last week’s meeting, the planning commission recommended rezoning three parcels totaling 117.5 acres on Glenn Jackson Road near its intersection with Luke Circle for development of a subdivision, but at a far lesser density than the applicants have requested.

The panel voted 3-2 to deny a request by LGI Homes Georgia and the land owners to change the future land-use map designation for the land, which would allow the applicants to get an R-2 zoning and build a planned subdivision of 310 single-family homes with a proposed minimum of 2,000 square feet and a density of well over two units per acre.

The panel did vote 4-1 in favor of a rezoning to R-1, but that zoning would require 1-acre minimum lot sizes and further restrictions on the density because the character area for the parcels is under Rural Reserve and Rural Neighborhood.

Two neighboring residents spoke against the requests during the public hearing due to concerns over traffic and stormwater management and potential impact on nearby school capacity.

Joshua Scoggins, the attorney representing the applicants, said the project wouldn’t be able to be developed under R-1 zoning because they wouldn’t be able to tie sewer to the 1-acre minimum lots, which the updated county code requires. The letter of intent for the project also contended that a less-dense subdivision with far fewer homes would not be economically feasible for the applicants.

Because the proposed subdivision would in part border R-1 developments within the City of Statham, Scoggins said the applicants had explored possibly annexing into the city, but they wouldn’t legally be able to because it would not contiguously join the city limits.

If the BOC were to go against the county planning staff’s recommendation for denial of the requests and the planning commission’s recommendation for an R-1 rezoning and grant the requests, Scoggins said construction could start on the subdivision after 12-18 months of development work and that homes would be phased in over the next 4-6 years.

OTHER BUSINESS

In other business at its Aug. 19 meeting, the planning commission:

•recommended approval of a request by David Dillard and the Jack and Janet Dillard Family Partnership to change the character area for and rezone 5.63 acres on Carl-Bethlehem Road near its intersection with Loganville Highway for commercial and retail uses, with 3-5 outparcels. At the applicants’ request, the commission tabled until next month a separate request to change the character area of and rezone another 31.76 acres of the Dillard Farm property in order for a multi-family housing development with 275 units to be built. That request is now scheduled to come before the panel at its September meeting.

•recommended approval of a request to change the character area of and rezone 0.835 acres at 241 Hwy. 211 NW, Winder, for a new convenience store to take the place of the former “Real Deal,” which closed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Though a convenience store has been operating there, the property has been under R-1 zoning, which Stanton Porter, the attorney representing the applicants, characterized as likely an oversight.

•recommended approval of a special-use request for a convenience store in an Agricultural Commercial zoning district at 856 Atlanta Hwy., Auburn.

•recommended approval of a special-use request for a wedding venue at 288 He Gardens Dr., Winder.

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