TV/movie studio rezoning approved

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In a decision likely to change the fabric of Fayette County’s future, the county commission Thursday night approved a rezoning that will allow a television and movie studio to be built on a large tract of farmland in the rural center of the county.

Pinewood Studios plans to make a home on a 288-acre site at the intersection of Sandy Creek Road and Veterans Parkway (also formerly known as the West Fayetteville Bypass).

Construction can begin as early as next month as the company hopes to be up and running by January 2014 in an effort that will bring thousands of jobs to Fayette County in addition to millions of dollars of tax revenue. The developers who are in charge of building the campus have pledged to maintain the rural character of the area.

The buildings will be set several football fields away from the roads and there will be parking spaces for 283 cars along with overflow parking.

The parcel, which is directly across from Rivers Elementary School, was actually used the past week to film a pilot for a TV show on the ABC network as the production used the rural, undeveloped character of the site with about 300 people on site to shoot what will be edited down to about 20 minutes of airtime.