Cobb commissioners delay decision on large mixed-use development on Chastain Road until February

Cobb County government building sign, a vertical rectangular sign with the words "Board of Commissioners," "County Clerk," "County Manager," "County Office," "Employment," and a wheelchair entrance icon

By Caleb Groves

On Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2023, the Cobb County Board of Commissioners voted to hold a rezoning request for a large multi-use land parcel off of Chastain Road and Chastain Meadows Parkway in Cobb Commission District 3 until their February zoning meeting.

The applicant, SDP Acquisitions, faced push-back during every planning commission meeting for the past three months from citizens. The zoning case was Z-15-2023.

The applicant’s site plan for the mixed-use development includes townhomes, senior living, retail, office and warehouse use.

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After over ten site plan revisions, the applicant’s attorney, Kevin Moore, presented to the BOC the latest revision, notably reducing the number of dock doors per staff recommendation to one for every 6,000 square feet of office space.

Moore said the site plan would also include a 100-foot greenery buffer between the office space and retail area of the site plan. And it incorporated a reduction of the number of townhomes from over 200 to 135.

“For the last 25 years, Cobb County has approved OS, office services, within this community activity center that has been built, which are existing to then deny this application and deny OS, office service zoning in this instance from our standpoint is indefensible,” Moore said.

Thirty-three people opposed the application during Tuesday’s meeting and four supported it. Alongside the in-person opposition, the BOC received 62 emails opposed to the site plan.

Tullan Avard of the Bells Ferry Civic Association spoke out against the site plan, advocating for the county to preserve trees and greenery on the land parcel, as it is one of the few remaining green spaces in Cobb.

Another concern of Avard’s is the office spaces on the parcel. Much of what is said to be office space on the property includes many loading docks, which are more akin to industrial warehouses.

“For the applicant who is from out of the county, this is just another project, but for us, this area is home and this development will have an impact on our quality of life, safety, and home values, Avard said. “Therefore, we respectfully ask that you deny the case in its entirety and keep the existing zoning as it is now until another zoning case is filed.”

The BOC unanimously voted to hold the case until the Feb. 20, 2024, zoning hearing.

During this time, the applicant will be expected to draft a new site plan with the whole parcel to be zoned as public village community zoning, preserve trees along the Chastain Meadows Parkway and maintain buffers along I-75 and Chastain Road, Commissioner JoAnn Birrell said.

Caleb Groves is a Journalism student at Kennesaw State University, where he is a junior.

Originally from Minnesota, Caleb moved to Georgia with his family, where he now lives in Woodstock with his Father, Stepmom and numerous pets.

When he is not in writing, in class or coaching rock climbing, he spends his time listening to music and rock climbing both indoors and out

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