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Macon-Bibb County zoning board rejects rehearing on Rivoli-Bass site in north Bibb

The Macon-Bibb County Planning & Zoning Commission agreed Monday it would not grant a rehearing on the density requirements for a 71-acre site in north Bibb County.

In April, the zoning commission rezoned 5646 Rivoli Drive from an agricultural district to a planned development residential district, but it set the maximum gross density at 5 units per acre, even though the applicant, Dunwody & Sams Trust, had ask for a density of 6.5 units per acre. The purpose of the rezoning in the original application was to allow a mixed-use senior-housing community called Founders Pond and would have included townhouses, single-family homes and a retirement center.

The North Bibb Citizen’s Coalition, a group of area residents who opposed the project, was seeking a total density of 3.3 units per acre.

The applicant requested a rehearing based in part because there was no evidence presented that would support a density of 5 units per acre.

“There was no conceptual plan showing how the land could be used as a mixed-use residential development with a density of 5 units per acre,” the applicant said in a report to the commission. “In a planned district residential zoning, the issue of density is critical.”

But some commission members said Monday there was no new information presented that would lead them to believe a rehearing would be beneficial.

“I think the zoning classification is the right classification, and I don’t see any reason to rehear that,” said Vice Chairwoman Sarah Gerwig-Moore. “Until we see a real site plan and maybe a potential developer, I don’t see a reason to have what would be our sixth or seventh hearing on the matter. ... We’ve heard this so many times and it’s still so hypothetical.”

No oral testimony was allowed during the rehearing request.

Land planner Zan Thompson, who represents the applicant, said after the meeting he wasn’t surprised at the commission’s decision, and he wasn’t sure what the next step would be.

“We will have to get together and decide what to do,” Thompson said. “We could come back with a site plan with density at 5 (units per acre). We could wait several years until things change out there or we could take it to court. ... We could file a new zoning application.”

In another matter, the commission approved a conditional-use permit to allow an expansion of First Presbyterian Day School at 548 Brookside Drive. Plans include a new multi-sport practice field, a new multi-sport athletic field, four tennis courts and the construction of a maintenance and storage building.

The application was deferred from the June 8 meeting to allow the applicant an opportunity to meet with neighborhood representatives.

Chris Clarke, with Carter & Sloope consulting engineers, who represented the school, said that meeting took place and an issue residents had with people parking in the neighborhood during athletic events would be addressed more stringently in the future. Also no sports lighting would be installed on the new fields at this time, he said.

Other items on the agenda were:

REZONINGS:

2730 Masseyville Road: Proposal to rezone from R-3, Residential District to PDE, Planned Development Extraordinary District. The purpose of this rezoning is to allow senior residential housing and an assisted living facility. Charlotte Place Corp., applicant. Approved.

CONDITIONAL USES:

2229 Ridgeley Court: Conditional use to allow a second dwelling with variance in lot width requirements, A-Agricultural District. Jason Beckham; Jennifer Davis, applicant. Approved.

4341 Interstate Drive: Conditional use to allow a contractor’s office in an existing office/warehouse, PDI District. Kent Priddy; Service Experts of Middle Georgia, applicant. Approved.

4017 Hartley Bridge Road: Conditional use to allow a convenience store with fuel sales, A-Agricultural District. Widner & Associates, applicant. Approved.

2900 Jeffersonville Road: Conditional use to allow a convenience store with fuel sales, M-1 District. Widner & Associates, applicant. Approved.

935 High St.: Conditional use to allow a professional office in an existing building, HR-3 District. Josh Rogers; Historic Macon Foundation Inc., applicant. Approved.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS:

939 Second St.: Certificate of Appropriateness to allow design approval of a proposed signage, CBD-2 District. Anytime Bail Bonding, applicant. Approved.

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

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