The type of residential zoning being requested would limit what could be built on the property. According to attorney George McCoin, speaking for the property owner, the land could not be used for mobile homes. The intended use for the property is to build a 16-unit subdivision of townhomes.
“These would be owner-occupied units, not renter units,” McCoin said. “The plan is to have restrictions and a homeowners association.”
The attorney also highlighted the benefits to the county if the rezoning was approved. McCoin said the development would create jobs because it would be new construction, and provide for coming growth.
Tricia Hall of Southern Homebuilders also presented photographs of the type of townhomes that would be built on the site.
“Our buyers typically ... 68 percent of our buyers are single professionals. The married couples are typical young professionals just starting out,” Hall said.
She said these people are excited about owning their first home.
The rezoning request was initially opposed by 2nd District Commissioner Connie Wilson because of concerns about traffic on Urbane Road. However, she said Monday after talking to the developers, she is more comfortable with the project.
McCoin said less traffic is created with townhomes as opposed to other types of development that could be done on the site.
Community members also expressed concerns about Urbane Road.
“I feel that Urbane Road is almost to the breaking point,” community member Danny Lee said. “Something needs to be done about Urbane Road.”
Lee said he appreciated the subdivision’s plans to build deceleration lanes for those turning into the subdivision.
County engineer Sandra Knight said the road could handle increased traffic because it was built to an industrial grade.
Lee said he did not have a problem with the proposed subdivision, but is concerned about traffic, especially trucks, on the road. Lee said truck drivers often use jake brakes when coming down one of the hills. Two other residents in the area also spoke, and agreed with Lee.
Wilson asked if there was anything the Commission could do about the use of jake brakes as trucks come down the hill.
Knight said if funds were available a solution could be to regrade the hill and then widen the curve.
Another solution could be through using local law enforcement, according to chairman Louie Alford.
The commissioners asked 3rd District Commissioner Brian Smith to bring up the issue at the law enforcement meeting scheduled for today, and discuss what the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office could do.
The rezoned site is 8 acres owned by Ricky Brooks. He said he has no plans to develop his remaining 25 acres adjacent to the property.
Also during the meeting, the Commission approved a motion to take the funding allocated in the budget to give commissioners a raise and use it to fix the Commission meeting room’s sound system.
A podium microphone in the system is not working and there is a constant hum and static. First District Commissioner Ed Elkins said there were some broken wires in the podium microphone. The Commission had previously looked into replacing the system, but moved the funding to pay for a court-mandated mental evaluation for a county jail inmate.
Fourth District Commissioner J. Adam Lowe said modifications to the system could include electronic recording capabilities. Elkins said he was unsure if the money set aside would be able to fix the entire system. Lowe said he would at least like to have the podium microphone and the microphone for the county attorney working. Other items would be considered if money allowed.
“Until we get someone in here to look at it, I’m not sure what that (the price) would be,” Lowe said.
The motion gives $2,021 to the project.