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Expansion of The Collection at Forsyth detailed
Mixed-use concept will require overlay

Other action

Also during their meeting Thursday night, the Forsyth County commission:

* Extended by 90 days the moratorium on requests to upgrade electronic message board for non-conforming signs.

The rules typically allow certain traditional billboards to be converted into modern LED billboards. The county previously enacted a 30-day ban in September.

* Held the first public hearing on a proposal to require homes in neighborhoods with cluster mailboxes to have a post designating individual addresses in each yard or lot. The posts most likely would be located where a home’s mailbox would have been.

The move is to help emergency personnel find addresses. A second public hearing is required before the change can be enacted.

* Approved a change to the county’s sign code over expression, monument blade and roof signs.

The expression sign change was in response to the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Reed v. Town of Gilbert over the content of signs. The change to monument blade and roof signs was due to technical definitions in the county code.


* Note: Votes were 5-0 unless otherwise noted.


-- Kelly Whitmire

SOUTH FORSYTH — The proposed expansion and transformation of an outdoor shopping mall in south Forsyth into a mixed-use development with on-site housing and other amenities is proceeding.

The Forsyth County commission voted 4-1 last week, with Commissioner Todd Levent opposed, to hold public hearings on the overlay district The Collection at Forsyth would need for the proposal.

If approved, housing in the development would be geared toward the county’s growing millennial and senior populations. Plans call for 300 upscale one- and two-bedroom housing units.

Several other amenities are included in the plan from Core Property Capital, which owns the Collection.

“We have worked with the planning staff on this proposed overlay … and we believe we’re ready to go forward with a public hearing,” Ethan Underwood, an attorney representing the company, told the commission during a previous work session.

“There’s a park area, an amphitheater, a residential element and also some mixed-use.”

The Collection, formerly known as The Avenue Forsyth, opened in May 2008 off Peachtree Parkway (Hwy. 141) and Ronald Regan Boulevard, near Ga. 400 at Exit 13.

Though the mall is currently in the county’s Peachtree Parkway Overlay District, the new overlay is a requirement for the residential and mixed-use portions.

The project would extend The Collection down Ronald Regan toward the Forsyth County campus of Lanier Technical College.

County Attorney Ken Jarrard said the plan would next go before the county’s planning board, a recommending body to the commission.

“What that implies is that [county] staff and my office will work to make the overlay in a format we’re comfortable with and then take it to the planning commission,” Jarrard said.