Condos proposed for Masters Tournament visitors denied by planning commission

A new condominium complex proposed for Berckmans Road in walking distance of Augusta National Golf Club was denied Monday by the Augusta Planning Commission.

Sporting event management company Byrom PLC requested rezoning for five lots in the Jamestown neighborhood on Margate Drive, which backs up to Berckmans Road, to build 16 condo units for accommodations during Masters Week, according to Augusta attorney Harry Revell, who presented the request on behalf of the corporation.

“They are not, I want the commission to understand, a hospitality house akin to those on Washington Road where 50, 100, 200 people may come during the Masters,” Revell said. “These will be sold to private individuals and corporations as living accommodations.”

Byrom PLC, based in England, paid $1.7 million for the five parcels. The company specializes in ticketing, hospitality and accommodations for global sporting events, including the World Cup and the Ryder Cup.

Two dozen Jamestown residents opposed the condos at Monday’s planning commission meeting, saying the condos encroach on the neighborhood where residents have lived for decades and would increase traffic during Masters Week.

“The zoning request before you would alter the residential character of the neighborhood,” said homeowner George Ransom. “We live in Jamestown for the other 51 weeks of the year as well.”

Robert Barnes, the lone supporter of the request, said he welcomed the condos because the area where he owns property needs “positive, new development.”

Before the commission’s vote, Augusta Planning Director Melanie Wilson recommended denying the request because it was double the existing density of the neighborhood and attached units were not consistent with the subdivision.

The petitioner can take the request before the Augusta Commission on May 20.

Also at the meeting, a request from Verizon Wireless to place a wireless tower on the property of the Masonic Hall on Wrightsboro Road was deferred 90 days. Operators of Daniel Field airport have opposed the tower for air safety concerns.

 

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