Mableton cityhood, Austell development, and crime stats among topics at Cobb Commission District 4 Town Hall

Welcome to Cobb County brick sign at Henderson Road on Veterans Memorial

By Mike Malone

Cobb County Chairwoman Lisa Cupid expressed sadness and regret on how Mableton cityhood was handled at a meeting for District 4 residents held Tuesday.

The Town Hall was attended by about 50 citizens and Cobb County staff members at the Cobb Police Academy.

“I have a real sadness in my heart over this, she said.

Citizens have complained they were not properly notified they would be in the new city. Many thought only those with a Mableton postal address would be included. Mableton area residents voted 53 to 47 percent in favor of cityhood in the November general election.

Cupid said although she wanted to send notification letters to those affected by cityhood, the county must remain neutral by law. No notification letters were sent to Lost Mountain, East Cobb or Vinings residents, three other areas on the earlier ballot for cityhood. So it would not be fair to send notification only to Mableton area residents, she added.

Mayoral and City Council elections will be held March 21. A runoff election will probably happen too, Monique Sheffield, District 4 board member, predicted.

In other District 4 announcements, funds are available to buy property for a Osborne Community Center, near Osborne High School and two “pocket parks” in Austell, Sheffield said. The center, on 20 acres, will have an indoor track and a swimming pool that will be built in phases. Money for the pool will be allocated later, Sheffield added.

In addition, 2.7 miles of the Chattahoochee Riverlands Trailhead will pass through Mableton. The regional trailhead will be located near the intersection of Mableton Parkway and Discovery Road, on 8 acres of land located behind the “Discover” sign at that intersection.

Also in the works for District 4 is the future expansion of the South Cobb Library. Upgrading library bathroom will cost $550,00 and plans to expand the library will cost another $2 million and come from SPLOST funds dedicated to community project funding, Sheffield said, adding the expansion of the library is needed to keep up with growth in the area.

Another planned project is the construction of an Austell-South Cobb transfer center, built close to the Cobb Wellstar hospital on Austell Road The county is scouting for a location, she said.

“Patients don’t come back for follow-up visits because they don’t have transportation, she explained.

New restaurants are coming to Mableton as well. A Panda Express will be built at the Lowe’s Shopping center off the East-West Connector. A Chipolte’s Mexican Grill is planned for a Floyd Road location near Marco’s Pizza, and an Eggs Up eatery will be coming to the Hobby Lobby Shopping Center.

Also in the works is a project called The Millery at Mableton that will have 188 units and 1,792 feet of retail space that will include a patio. It will be located at 770 Nickajack Road. [An earlier version of this article described the address as “70.” We regret any confusion it may have caused]

Later in the town hall meeting, Cobb County Police Chief Stuart VanHoozer made a presentation and pointed to statistics that show most crime is down in Cobb County over the last 12 months. Residential burglary is down 61 percent, he said. Commercial burglary is down 51 percent, car break-ins dropped 52 percent., vehicle thefts are down 20 percent, other theft decreased by 20 percent and robberies declined by 64 percent

However, personal crime has gone up, adding that homicides are up 14 percent, rapes increased by 16 and assaults are up 21 percent.

Also in the works for District 4:

  • A Cobb Works Training Center at the old fire station #1 on Mableton Parkway.
  • Downtown road improvements for Powder Springs.
  • An enterprise zone for Austell that will include a brewery, a boutique and a shared-working space.
  • Sidewalk and paving projects for Austell Road an Mableton Parkway
  • And $550,000 allocated for the sheriff’s annex at the old library site on Mableton Parkway