At an Acworth Board of Aldermen meeting Thursday evening, council members decided to table a request for abandoning a right of way near Carruth Circle and announced further city openings.
BB Construction Enterprises owner Vasil Tzvetkov requested that the right of way on Carruth Circle be partially abandoned to develop the site near the road into a 12,000 to 30,000 square foot shopping center. Tzvetkov would like to rezone the property that is next to the right of way.
Additionally, Tzvetkov said he would like for the center to be accessible from Cowan Road, as he said the entrance off of the right of way of Carruth to the development is not good and the road should be widened.
Acworth City Manager Brian Bulthuis said that the board is currently looking at the site and that while he was concerned about the entrance off Carruth, he was not certain that the city should abandon the development site on Cowan Road.
Acworth owns about 4,695 square feet of the right of way off Carruth Circle and because Tzvetkov does not own the property next to the right of way, he cannot request the rezoning. Therefore, Tzvetkov requested that the right of way be abandoned instead.
Aldermen Brett North, Tim Richardson and Tim Houston agreed that the property should not be abandoned. Houston said that he had further questions he would like to discuss in a future meeting with Tzvetkov about his proposal.
Bulthuis continued, saying that a public meeting would need to be held about Tzvetkov’s proposal. Board and council members expressed support to wanting to hear further details about the request.
An additional concern was expressed from Director of Power and Public Works Angie Luna about Tzetkov’s proposal. Luna said that the abandonment of the right of way may obstruct the firetruck lane in the circle, not allowing for firetrucks to get through.
Chief of Police Wayne Dennard seconded Luna’s concern and said that firetrucks would be confined to a “pretty tight turn” without a lane for firetrucks.
Bulthuis suggested that Tzvetkov work with Dennard and Luna more to develop his idea and recommended tabling this issue for a future meeting. Mayor Tommy Allegood agreed and said he was interested in the same thing Tzvetkov was interested in, but time will be needed to work on his plan.
At Thursday’s meeting, Bulthuis also announced that Acworth City Hall and the city’s Municipal Court will be opening in the coming weeks with significant changes being made.
Court will be open to the public on Thursday, May 14, while City Hall opens up to the public Monday, May 18. Bulthuis mentioned that 100 people are on the docket for court next Thursday.
In an interview with Assistant to the City Manager Alex Almodóvar after the meeting, Almodóvar elaborated on the guidelines Acworth is adhering to as court and City Hall open.
“We’re going to limit the people to 25 in the courtroom, because that’s the maximum amount [of people] that we can social distance with,” he said. “Once we get to 25, everyone else will have to wait either in their cars or we’ll have markers outside for social distancing where they can wait.”
Almodóvar said that all city workers will have masks and will constantly have surfaces sanitized. Those coming into court must have masks and if they do not, a mask will be provided to them. City Hall workers will be working behind Plexiglas, he said.
During the meeting, board member Gene Pugliese mentioned that final modifications will be made to the next phase of opening Acworth parks. Acworth began its initial phase of opening parks Friday, April 24.
Almodóvar said that one modification to the city’s former park reopenings is that the date city events were going to restart was pushed from Sunday, May 10, to Sunday, May 31. Additionally, the Acworth Community Center will not open until at least Monday, June 1.
“We’re working as normal, our services haven’t stopped,” Almodóvar said. “We’re still providing sanitation, power, we’re still trying to provide the best services that we can, we’re just adjusting and we’re taking precautionary measures.”
The city is adhering to the COVID-19 guidelines and requirements put in place by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Governor Brian Kemp, Almodóvar said.
“We’re optimistic, and that’s why we’re planning to have a staged opening,” he said. “We’re just taking it kind of day by day, making sure we have the best interests of our residents, our visitors and our businesses in mind as we gradually open.”
For further information on Acworth park openings, visit the city’s webpage.
Arielle Robinson is a student at Kennesaw State University. She also freelances for the Atlanta-Journal Constitution and is the former president of KSU’s chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists as well as a former CNN intern. She enjoys music, reading, and live shows.