Planning Commission recommends denial of Dawson Village Partners development

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DAWSONVILLE Ga. – The Dawson County Planning Commission voted 3-2 Tuesday to recommend the Board of Commissioners deny the controversial Dawson Village Partners plan to build a Master Planned Village on 777 acres starting at Lumpkin Campground Road and Ga. 400, stretching to Etowah River Road then across the Etowah River.

Chairman Jason Hamby joined John Dooley and Neil Hornsey in voting to recommend denial. John Maloney and Tim Bennett voted to recommend approval.

The Government Center Assembly room was packed with residents, mostly opposed the development. When the vote was announced, many applauded and some shouted “thank you” to the commissioners. But the recommendation is non-binding. County Commissioners will make the final decision next month.

Shaun Adams, an attorney for the developer, outlined the project, which he said would include 250 acres of green space, a five-star hotel with approximately 300 rooms,  a performing arts center for concerts, approximately 300,000 square feet of retail/restaurant space, 200,000 square feet of office space, land to build a fire station, a 40-acre park with canoe launch on the Etowah River, a continuous care retirement community with an assisted living and nursing center with about 450 beds and a Chinese cultural arts center.

The plan originally called for a 2,700 residential units but that has since been reduced to 2,175 units.

The development would be built in five phases and would take between 10 and 15 years to complete.

Dooley expressed concern about the project’s density and added it would risk, “turning us into our neighbors to the south.”

Hornsey said, “It might be a little too ambitious for us.”

More than two dozen residents rose to express their views regarding the project. Nineteen were opposed.

Tony Passarello was one of only six who spoke in favor of the development. “To me it represents a management vehicle for growth,” he said. “It is a larger development and therefore you can manage it. Based on the restrictions and the planning and some of the stipulations that have been discussed tonight, the scale is large enough for us to have some predictability as long as financing and their demographics work out.

He added that the development is consistent with controlled growth metered over the next 10 years and that it is the type of development that citizens indicated they wanted in a comprehensive plan survey conducted last year.

Several speakers said they did not want Dawson County to become another Cumming, Alpharetta or Gainesville. Others said the county is not ready for a development of this size.

Johnny Burt said, “I don’t have a problem with people making money. The problem I do have is when people come into the county, make their money and leave us with the problems they’ve left behind.”

 

 

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Massive Dawson Village Partners rezoning request goes before Dawson County Planning Commission Tuesday

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – Anyone hoping to get a seat at the Dawson County Planning Commission meeting tomorrow (Tuesday, April 16) should arrive early. The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. in the Dawson County Government Assembly Room and a standing-room-only crowd is expected to attend to hear a rezoning request that could permit one of the biggest developments in the county’s history.

Dawson Village Partners is asking to rezone approximately 770 acres to Mixed Planned Village for a development currently known as Etowah Village. Original plans called for a 974-acre development that would include approximately 2,700 residential units. That number has now been reduced to 2,175 units.

Following Tuesday’s planning commission hearing the request will go before the Board of Commissioners with a recommendation to approve or deny. That meeting is tentatively set for May.

The developer’s plan calls for the development to begin at the intersection of Lumpkin Campground Road and Ga. 400 expanding west to Etowah River Road and across the Etowah River.

At an informational meeting last month, project engineer Corey Guthrie revealed that plans call for construction of a convention center, luxury hotel that could rise to 10 stories, a performing arts center for concerts, approximately 300,000 square feet of retail/restaurant space, 200,000 square feet of office space, a 12,000 square foot fire station, a 40-acre park with canoe launch on the Etowah River, and a continuous care retirement community with an assisted living and nursing center with about 450 beds.

Guthrie said the project could take 10-15 years to complete and would be built in five phases.

Phase 1 consists of building the fire station, hotel and retail along Ga. 400.

Phase 2 calls for construction of office buildings, apartments, a performing arts center and museum.

Phase 3 will be the addition of continuous care retirement center.

Phase 4 would include a 400-unit active adult community. The final phase calls for the addition of 171-single family units.

Guthrie said if the county commission approves the rezoning, it will be at least nine months to a year before ground is broken.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

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Large crowd attends Dawson Village Partners information meeting

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – Representatives from Dawson Village Partners LLC met with a very engaged group of approximately 100 stakeholders to provide details and answer questions about the massive 770-acre, 2,175 resident, mixed village development known as Etowah Village at Fire Station No. 2 yesterday.

The scope of the project — which will span the northwest corner of Lumpkin Campground Road and Ga. 400 westward, crossing the Etowah River and reaching Etowah River Road – has been reduced from 974 acres and 2,700 residences.

The project was expected to go before the Dawson County Planning Commission next week, but the developer has asked for a postponement until either April or May.

Plans call for approximately 300,000 square feet of residential space, 200,000 square feet of retail/restaurant space, a 12,000 square foot fire station, 300-room hotel with conference center, a performing arts center for concerts. About 30 percent of the project will be green space, including a 40-acre park with canoe launch on the Etowah River.

There will also be 171 single-family residences and, 400 multi-family residences. 319 of those will be above retail space. The rest will be age targeted or age restricted. Within that will be a continuous care retirement community with an assisted living, nursing center with about 450 beds.

Project Engineer Corey Gutherie said there is still a lot of work to be done before ground can be broken.

Following the planning commission meeting, the project will have to go before the Board of Commissioners at least twice, first to get approval for the project then again to get approval of the architectural design.

“It will be at least nine months to a year after that before we can begin moving dirt,” Gutherie said Wednesday.

The project is expected to take 10-15 years to complete. Phase 1 consists of building the fire station, hotel and retail along Ga. 400.

Phase 2 calls for construction of office buildings, apartments, a performing arts center and museum. Phase 3 will be the addition of continuous care retirement center. Phase 4 would include a 400-unit active adult community. The final phase calls for the addition of 171-single family units.

Reaction from the stakeholders was mostly positive.

Bill Minor who lives in the Gates of Etowah subdivision said, “Overall it’s as good as were going to get for that area. It’s a well thought out project that I can support. The only negative I heard was access from Hwy. 53. The state and county will have to work that out.”

Ty Hudson, who grew up in Roswell, but lives in the Savannah Trace subdivision, said, “I can definitely support this. It will be a great thing for Dawson County. I just don’t want it to turn the rest of Dawsonville into a ghost town. We have three small children and once they are a little older my wife may want to go back to work. If she doesn’t want to work in retail, she would have to work outside Dawson County. But with the offices that will become a part of the development, she may be able to find a job locally.”

Jerry Gordon was a little more reserved. “I haven’t totally decided yet,” he said. “It’s quite a large project to take in all at once. It will mean a lot of growth and a lot of things will have to change. I tend to think they are headed in the right direction. A lot of us are trying to figure out if it will mean an increase or decrease in our property values.”

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

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Rezoning request postponed until April meeting

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. — The Dawson Village Partners, LLC rezoning request that was scheduled to go before the Dawson County Planning Commission on March 19, will be postponed until the next meeting in April.

Dawson Partners, LLC is proposing a massive mixed use village to be located on a 974-acre site at the northwest corner of the intersection of Lumpkin Campground Road and Ga. 400 west, crossing the Etowah River and reaching Etowah River Road.

Developers are awaiting the results of a development of regional impact (DRI) study being conducted by the Georgia Mountains Regional Commission before moving forward.
DRIs are large-scale developments that are likely to have regional effects beyond the local government jurisdiction in which they are located. The Georgia Planning Act of 1989 authorized the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) to establish procedures for review of these large-scale projects.

These procedures are designed to improve communication between affected governments and to provide a means of revealing and assessing potential impacts of large-scale developments before conflicts relating to them arise.

At the same time, local government autonomy is preserved since the host government maintains the authority to make the final decision on whether a proposed development will or will not go forward.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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Dawson County Planning Commission reelects officers for 2019

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – In the first meeting of 2019, the Dawson County Planning Commission met and elected officers for the new year. All of the officers will remain the same as 2018.

Jason Hamby was reelected chairman, Emory Dooley was reelected vice chairman and Planning and Development Director Jameson Kinley was reelected secretary. All votes were unanimous.

Commissioners also unanimously approved a variance request by Ben Trail on behalf of Milton Bouchillon for an existing barn on property on War Hill Park Road. The applicant is adding acreage to the site and the barn, which was built more than 40 years ago, is not in compliance.

Staff recommended approval and the commission voted 5-0 to grant the approval.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

 

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Controversial rezoning resurfaces after 2016 denial

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Planning Commission meeting set for 6 p.m. Tuesday on second floor of the Dawson County Government Center.

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – A controversial rezoning request denied by the Dawson County Board of Commissioners one year ago, almost to the day, is back on the planning commission agenda Tuesday, Dec. 19, at 6 p.m. The meeting will be held on the second floor of the Dawson County Government Center.

Bill Evans, of Dawson Forest Holdings, has submitted two applications. One would allow him to build 95 townhomes on property located at 20 Hughes Court and the other to build 177 1,200-square foot, single-family houses on property located on Hwy. 53, adjacent to Fire Station No. 2 and the Tractor Supply Co.

Area homeowners, who joined forces to oppose the influx of new housing last year, attended county commission and planning commission meetings and submitted a petition signed by more than 400 area residents in opposition of the applications.

On Dec. 13, 2016, commissioners unanimously denied the application stating the developer’s plans did not align with the future land use plan for the area.

In January, Evans sued the county, the board of commissioners and each commissioner individually for denying the applications, stating the commission’s refusal to rezone the parcels from residential agricultural to residential multi-family violated his constitutionally protected right to use his property for any lawful purpose.

Tony Passarello, an Elliott Road resident, sent an email last week urging residents to attend Tuesday’s planning commission meeting.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in NOn.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

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