P&Z OKs projects that will bring homes, apartments to downtown Macon

lmorris@macon.comDecember 9, 2013 

Two new developments received the green light Monday that will add new single-family homes and apartments to downtown Macon.

The Macon-Bibb County Planning & Zoning Commission approved permits to allow a single-family cluster subdivision with 13 lots at 425 New St. One lot would be used for a common area, and houses would be built on the other lots.

The 1.2-acre tract is near the southwest intersection of New and Cherry streets, behind the American Cancer Society building.

“Most all the infrastructure is (already) in place,” said developer Ryan Griffin with RDG Ventures.

The detached homes would be no more than two stories and vary in size from 1,600 square feet to 2,000 square feet, Griffin said.

The homes would have front and back porches, and the property would be “heavily landscaped and well lit,” Griffin said in a letter filed with the commission.

The commission also agreed to rezone 1305 and 1345 Hardeman Avenue from a neighborhood commercial district to a planned development district for a mixed-used development behind the main post office on College Street.

The proposed development, which includes two buildings on the 3.56-acre site, would feature residential loft apartments for Mercer University students and retail uses, said land planner Zan Thompson, owner of ZT3 Placemaker Studio, who is representing the developer.

The Lofts at College, first announced in October by Sierra Development Group, includes construction of about 13,300 square feet of retail space, 145 total residential units and 283 parking spaces, Thompson said.

The common area will have outdoor grills and provide students with an outdoor gathering space, he said.

“This is one of our gateways” to the city, Thompson said.

In an earlier report to the commission, the commercial uses likely would include “a sandwich shop, laundry, hair salon, pizza eatery, yogurt shop, clothing boutique and a restaurant with a bar” on the ground floor of the buildings.

“This is a very exciting project,” said Commissioner Kamal Azar. “It’s very nice. It’s new and fresh.”

The commission also approved signs as well as a conditional-use permit for the project.

In another matter, Commissioner Al Tillman was recognized for his service on the commission since February 2011.

Tillman is stepping down at the end of the year because he was elected earlier this year to serve as Macon-Bibb County commissioner in District 9.

Someone will be appointed to serve out his two remaining years on the planning and zoning board.

Other items on the agenda:

ITEMS DEFERRED FROM PRIOR MEETINGS:

4581 Forsyth Road: Variance to allow an electronic graphic display panel (EGD), C-4 District. ZT3 Placemaker Studio Inc., Peggy Thompson, applicant. A variance for the distance from residential property was approved. A variance in sign area and a variance to allow off-site advertising were denied.

CONDITIONAL USES:

911 Patterson St.: Conditional use to allow a tutoring service in an existing building, R-2 District. Isaac Eferighe, Math & Science Academy, applicant. Approved.

4930 Bloomfield Road: Conditional use to allow a fuel island and canopy addition to an existing shopping center, PDE District. Widner & Associates, applicant. Approved.

905 High St.: Conditional use to allow a site plan revisions to a previously approved student life center, HR-3 District. Chris Clark, Carter & Sloope, applicant.

3304 Jeffersonville Road: Conditional use to allow a banquet hall in an existing building, C-2 District. Betty Cleveland, applicant. Approved.

1711 Key St.: Conditional use to allow a convenience store with fuel sales, C-2 District. Roger Patel, Dhanesh Inc., applicant. Approved.

6999 Knoxville Road: Conditional use to allow a convenience store with fuel sales, C-2 District. Belinda Callaway, applicant. Approved.

3260 Williamson Road; 3306, 3480, & 3350 Bloomfield Drive; 3395 & 3397 Jesse Rice St.: Conditional use to allow a timber harvest (clear cut), PDE District. Earl Barrs, Due South Investments, applicant. Approved with a 50-foot buffer along residential property lines and with a requirement to replant the site during the next replanting season.

212 Ashford Court: Conditional use to allow revisions to buffer requirements, PDR District. Betty Shaw, applicant. Approved.

4460 Columbus Road: Conditional use to allow auto sales, PDE District. Columbus Watkins, applicant. Approved.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS:

905 High St.: Certificate of Appropriateness to allow design approval of exterior modifications (parking lot and dumpster location) HR-3 District. Chris Clark, Carter & Sloope, applicant. Approved.

VARIANCES:

2746 Montpelier Ave.: Variance in setback requirement to allow a building addition, C-2 District. Paul Kelley, applicant. Approved.

5228 Greenwood Terrace: Variance in location and setback requirements to allow two (2) accessory buildings, R-1A District. Richard Porter, applicant. Approved.

SIGNS:

5744 Thomaston Road: Variance in sign height requirements, PDE District. Sean Dukes, TKD Sign Studio, applicant. Approved.

3598 Williamson Road: Variance in sign height requirements, PDE District. Chris Bryant, applicant. Deferred.

1681 Rocky Creek Road: Variance in sign height requirements, C-1 District. Chris Bryant, applicant. Deferred.

INTERPRETATIONS:

Interpretation of Section 1.02 [79] and Section 10.03 [11] of the Comprehensive Land Development Resolution to allow a design center in an existing building, R-2 District. Tony Butler, applicant. The use was interpreted as a professional office.

To contact writer Linda S. Morris, call 744-4223.

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