A center for high-end cars, a new sports complex and new mixed-use zoning districts could soon be coming to Forsyth County.
On Tuesday, July 20, members of the Forsyth County Planning Commission held a work session to look over a number of projects before they come up on the board’s regular meeting agenda for public hearings at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 27 at the Forsyth County Administration building.
Here’s a look at what was discussed at the meeting.
New mixed-use projects
Amid some concerns of what should or should not be allowed in the county’s mixed-use districts, a new plan could create two new zoning categories to clear up confusion.
Vanessa Bernstein-Goldman, the county’s deputy director of planning and community development, said a proposed change would allow for three district concepts for mixed-use developments.
- Master-planned district, or MPD, the county’s current zoning district for mixed-use properties;
- Mixed-residential district, or MRD, which would be exclusively residential and allow for a variety of housing types;
- And mixed-use center district, or MCD, which would allow for a mix of commercial, office and light industrial uses with or without a residential component.
If approved, developments zoned MRD could include both attached and detached units and would need to use open space for some type of community benefit, such as a playground, square, plaza or community park.
Both the MRD and MCD would need at least 30 acres to be considered and a pre-application meeting between the developer and the county planning staff and the district commissioner.
Both districts would also require a minimum of 20% open space. Of that space, 25% would be needed for an active community space for recreation for leisure and another 25% would need to be undisturbed and could not be in areas that would otherwise be environmentally protected.
Any major amendments to projects that were approved would need to be approved by Forsyth County Commissioners, who previously heard the plan at their own work session.
Century Communities of Georgia, LLC
A new development could bring more than 100 homes to AC Smith Road.
Century Communities of Georgia has requested to rezone 88.5 acres from agricultural district (A1) to single-family residential district (Res2) for 112 residential lots with a density of 1.27 units per acre.
District 4 planning board member Nedal Shawkat said there were discussions to find places to save trees or plant new ones and he would be meeting with the developer and walk the site ahead of the regular meeting and public hearing.
Georgia Sports Arena
District 3 planning board member Jessica Thorsen said a proposal for the Georgia Sports Arena on Atlanta Highway would be “unlike anything we have.”
A request to rezone about 14 acres from neighborhood shopping (NS), single-family residential (R1) and commercial business (CBD) districts to all CBD for an office, retail trade establishment, a 6,000 square-foot restaurant and a 55,600-square-foot indoor commercial recreational facility with a conditional-use permit (CUP) for outdoor commercial athletic fields with 315 parking spaces on the west side of the intersection of Atlanta Highway and Valley Circle Road.
“I hate to show my hand very early on, but I’m actually kind of excited about this. I think it’s a great use for that area. It’s not far up the road from the ice-skating rink,” Thorsen said. “You’ll see it’s got a lot of residential across the road. It’s going to be a big facility.”
Along with the commercial recreation facility, the development will include a training practice field, four pickleball courts, two volleyball fields, 313 parking spaces and outparcels. The development will include about 25%, 2.3 acres, of open space.
A variance is also being sought to reduce the exterior buffer for some lots from 40 feet to zero feet.
Luxury car condos
A new development for owners of luxury cars has been proposed on Atlanta Highway.
During the meeting, planning board members discussed a request to rezone nine acres at 5639 Atlanta Highway from CBD to residential industrial district (M1) for warehouses, storage buildings, offices, showrooms and a high-end automotive retail village and car storage facility in buildings totaling 76,600-square-feet with 82 parking spaces.
The project includes four acres of open space, and plans show eight buildings associated with the site.
The development would allow owners of luxury cars to rent storage space and would include other commercial uses.
A variance to reduce the zoning buffer for two abutting properties from 20 feet to zero feet has also been requested.
During the meeting, planning officials said the developers of the project had previously been connected to a project known as the Stables Motor Condos on McFarland Parkway but have instead focused on the Atlanta Highway project.