Developers for the third phase of Mercer Lofts received approval Monday from the Macon-Bibb County Planning & Zoning Commission.
The third phase includes a 28-unit building that would be built at College Street, College Place and Shamrock Street, which is adjacent to Tatnall Square Park in Macon.
The commission approved a conditional-use permit and a certificate of appropriateness for 1206-1268 College St. and 1210-1262 College Place which would allow the construction of a multi-family dwelling, demolition of six buildings and relocation of one building.
The first two phases of Mercer Lofts are located in Mercer Village on Montpelier Avenue. Apartments are located on the upper floors with retail and office space on the first floors.
Jim Daws, president of Sierra Development, said as many people as possible were involved in planning the project. One of the concerns by Intown Macon Neighborhood Association was traffic, especially because of its proximity to Alexander II Magnet School.
But electronically controlled gates will be closed to the parking lot during the prime drop-off and pick-up times at the school, Daws said. Mercer students would not be able to get into the parking lot while the gate is locked, and they will have to park on the street, if necessary.
Also, as part of this deal, I brokered a deal with Mercer for the two-story brick house, and Historic Macon Foundation is going to renovate that house, and we will manage it for them, he said.
The third-phase building will be three stories facing College Street, and because of the topography, the rear will have four levels, according to plans. The development would provide 27 four-bedroom units and one three-bedroom unit, according to the report.
The proposed project includes the relocation of a house at 1256 College St. to property on Ash Street and the demolition of buildings on College Street and College Place.
Macon resident Michael Ryan said he opposed the demolition of any buildings along College Place and the rearrangement of the entire street.
There is no need for extra parking, he said. There is plenty of existing parking in the area.
Ryan said one parking space was adequate for each apartment unit, and he urged to let (students) work it out among themselves who would have a parking space.
But Daws said allotting only one parking space for a four-bedroom unit wasnt feasible, and Mercer University wasnt the only one requiring parking with the project.
To get a construction loan, I have to demonstrate that I have enough parking that serves the project, he said.
Other items on the agenda were:
2649 Antioch Road: Conditional use to allow a church in an existing building, M-1 District. The Christian Fitness Center, Pastor McArthur Lazenby, applicant. Approved.
5019-5081 Riverside Drive: Conditional use to allow a retail center with variance in parking requirements, C-2 District. Jarrett Nease, applicant. Approved.
2106 Old Clinton Road: Conditional use to allow timber harvest (clear cut), PDE District. Sandy Callaway, applicant. Withdrawn.
106 Culver St.: Certificate of Appropriateness to allow exterior modifications (windows, siding doors, railing, and fencing), HR-3 District. Terry Chatfield, applicant. Approved.
1372 Gray Highway: Conditional use to allow a multi-message billboard, C-4 District. Storage Master Inc./Jed Renfroe, applicant. Approved.
ITEMS FOR COMMISSION RATIFICATION:
101 Braxton Drive: Variance in location requirements to allow an accessory building, R-1 District [13-0190]. William Fields/Alice Fields, applicant. Approved.
To contact writer Linda S. Morris, call 744-4223.