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Development authority hears housing vision for north Forsyth
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Forsyth County News

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Also during its meeting Thursday, the Development Authority of Forsyth County:

* Approved its officers for 2015. David Seago will serve as chairman and Bobby Thomas as vice chairman, with Joanne Tolleson as secretary treasurer and Tim Perry as assistant secretary treasurer.

* Discussed the statue of Lady Justice that is scheduled to go in front of the new Forsyth County Courthouse. The sculpture won’t be installed until September. The authority is paying $50,000 of the estimated $118,000 cost.

 

-- Kelly Whitmire

NORTH FORSYTH — North Forsyth has trailed the county’s south end in growth and development, but many residents believe it will eventually catch up and want to have a plan for when that happens.

At a meeting Thursday of the Development Authority of Forsyth County, a representative of the Council for Quality Growth shared a vision for north Forsyth that includes housing for those who want upscale living without house maintenance.

“It’s a higher density, but it’s not a condo, it’s not an apartment, it’s cottage industry housing, which takes high density cottages and puts them around [center] greens,” said James Touchton, the council’s director of policy and government affairs.

“What we’ve found is that young professionals and older seniors love it.”

The council is a not-for-profit trade organization promoting balanced and responsible growth in the metro Atlanta region and state.

As part of his presentation, Touchton referenced the high-end mixed-use development Avalon in Alpharetta, which features living space, a movie theater, restaurants and other shops.

“Look at the opportunity you have in north Forsyth,” he said. “You’ve got a generation of young millennials coming from the north Fulton area that aren’t looking to buy a half million dollar house. They want to rent a higher end apartment.”

Touchton said that since such housing options likely would be just one or two bedrooms, they would impractical for raising a family. But they would encourage those who had built a life in town to purchase traditional homes in the area.

“What you’ll do is capture a lot of these people, people like me. If I lived in north Forsyth and I’m young, I finally meet a nice girl — and we decide we like this Forsyth thing — and we’re probably going to have kids,” he said. “When we finally have a kid, where am I going to migrate to if I love this area?"

“I’m naturally going to move south and buy one of the houses down there and continue the process.”

This is the latest in a series of conversations on plans for the development of north Forsyth, which have also included a subarea plan with greenway connectivity.

The idea is to have a plan for the area prior to larger developments showing interest in coming to north Forsyth.

Also during the meeting, the authority extended a Regional Economic Business Assistance grant with Femasys, a medical company focused on women’s health, until the end of the year.