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Commission rejects zoning proposal for apartment complex

Tuesday, June 19, 2012 10:44 PM
Last updated Wednesday, June 20, 2012 2:51 AM
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The Augusta Commission took little time Tuesday to veto a zoning proposal that would have permitted a 252-unit apartment complex off Augusta West Parkway.

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Rosalyn Floyd (right) talks to the Augusta Commission on behalf of a neighborhood opposing zoning for a 252-unit apartment complex off Augusta West Parkway.   SARA CALDWELL/STAFF
SARA CALDWELL/STAFF
Rosalyn Floyd (right) talks to the Augusta Commission on behalf of a neighborhood opposing zoning for a 252-unit apartment complex off Augusta West Parkway.

Before a full chamber of mostly retirement-age homeowners and residents of Hillcreek, The Meadows at Hillcreek and Nevis Townhomes, the commission voted 10-0 to deny the proposal.

The denial came despite the promise of more than $250,000 in new property tax revenue by Jim Trotter, the attorney for the Leonard P. Mays family, which owns the 16.87 acre tract.

Trotter said the property’s use for an upscale apartment complex in an area already replete with housing developments would actually create less traffic than if used under its existing zoning for offices. Several in the audience laughed.

“It is a $24 million project,” Trotter said. “I could pack the room with construction workers (and others) who would have benefited.”

Rosalyn Floyd, an Augusta State University music professor acting as spokeswoman for those in opposition, said residents worried about additional traffic from the complex “coming and going at all times of the day or night.”

Floyd said she had long enjoyed the privacy of the townhouse that she and her husband purchased nearly 20 years ago, despite knowing the Mays property eventually would be developed into office buildings.

“We depend on you, our county commissioners, to protect our property values,” she said.

The message resonated with Mayor Pro Tem Joe Bowles, who said his mother lived in the community after his father died. He moved to deny the zoning request.

In another matter Tuesday, the commission, after a closed-door meeting with attorneys, voted to purchase several tracts in the 3000 block of Tobacco Road for $278,000 from owner the H.A. Boswell Family Limited Partnership.

The lots, for which Augusta will be be reimbursed, will become the site of a filling station dispensing compressed natural gas that is part of the city’s new solid-waste collection contract, according to Commissioner Jerry Brigham.

Also approved after the closed-door meeting was a $3,462 settlement in a 2008 lawsuit filed by Robert Mullins and the Association for Fair Government against the city for its denial of an open-records request to inspect bid estimates received by informal bid selection, sole source procurement and emergency procurement processes.

Comments (9) Add comment
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Riverman1
94246
Points
Riverman1 06/20/12 - 03:41 am
6
2
For once, Columbia County

For once, Columbia County could learn something from Richmond Cty.

Techfan
6462
Points
Techfan 06/20/12 - 03:53 am
2
5
You live in the city, then

You live in the city, then complain about more traffic?

CobaltGeorge
176809
Points
CobaltGeorge 06/20/12 - 04:44 am
6
0
seenitB4
98477
Points
seenitB4 06/20/12 - 05:09 am
8
0
Original plan

If the original plan was office complex---well use it as that...doctors office--dental---etc. wouldn't be so intrusive...& a nice Teds Montana Grill ...:)

southern2
7905
Points
southern2 06/20/12 - 05:50 am
6
1
Good day for Richmond County

Good day for Richmond County property owners. To see unity on the Commission to preserve and protect a loved, stable neighborhood from being shaken by the wrong kind of adjacent development was a glorious event.

dstewartsr
20393
Points
dstewartsr 06/20/12 - 06:53 am
4
2
Not so fast

... denial must be based on something. However much the commission likes or dislikes the proposal as long as the application conforms to the law, it should be approved. The property owner(s) have rights, and more importantly, legal recourse. Ask the proprietors of X-Mart; if the applicant's pockets are deep enough and they are willing to slug it out in court, they will not only get their approval at length, but hand their legal bills to the selfsame taxpayers who are cheering this 'victory.'

boomhauer
650
Points
boomhauer 06/20/12 - 06:57 am
1
8
I hope the old folks are
Unpublished

I hope the old folks are happy, they got their wish and showed them! No undesirables are wanted in their area! No more traffic either!

LOL...how pathetic!

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 06/20/12 - 08:33 am
4
0
River

I gave you thumb up. It just happened. Couldn't stop myself. Won't happen again buddy.

Columbia County needs a music prof to protect our property rights as well. I'm going to Portman's after work to peruse their wares.

allhans
24964
Points
allhans 06/20/12 - 08:25 am
4
2
This is a good thing!

Good one Soapy....

This is a good thing!
Perhaps the land owners will find a more palatable use for the site.

Gage Creed
19442
Points
Gage Creed 06/20/12 - 06:09 pm
2
1
Most likely the decision was

Most likely the decision was based on the "concussions" the developers offered the affected HOA and their members.

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