Rorie seeks Coweta traffic cooperation

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A May 2 workshop retreat by the Peachtree City Council came with a review of the city’s comprehensive plan update and a conversation reviewing the city’s 2014 future annexation map.

Though few citizens attended the meeting, a number of boards members from city authorities such as the Airport Authority and the Water and Sewerage Authority were present.

Some of the themes that came from the previous meetings of the comprehensive plan steering committee in prior months included economic development and job growth, transportation issues and the village concept.

It was reiterated that the steering committee, along with input from other citizens, held to the position that Peachtree City should not change its direction as a community. Essentially, survey respondents said they like the city as it is.

The comprehensive plan also noted the need for the city to work with the Fayette County Development Authority to attract and encourage business expansion.

In terms of transportation issues, City Manager Jon Rorie said transportation is a regional issue. He noted that city staff have met with Coweta County staff and reviewed that county’s transportation plan to see how it impacts Peachtree City.

Bottom line, said Rorie, “We need to look long-term” when it comes to transportation since numerous motorists from other areas pass through Peachtree City.

Though Fayette and Coweta are different counties, Rorie noted that both are in the same Georgia Department of Transportation district.

Another item that requires future action revolves around the city’s village concept. It was clear during the steering committee meetings that more recent arrivals to the city are not aware that Peachtree City is laid out in villages.

That said, there is a need to more adequately define the village concept, the plan said.

City Planner Robin Cailloux during the portion of the meeting dealing with annexation noted the 2014 annexation study that identified several areas on the north, south and east sides of town that could be topics for future annexation.

Those potential annexation areas include the east side along Ga. Highway 54 East, the north side between Peachtree City and Tyrone and the south side in the area of Ga. highways 74 and 85.

Commenting on the 2014 study, Rorie reminded the council that, “In 2014, we said what could be, not what has to be.”

Citing a recent conversation about the potential annexation of Governor’s Row on Hwy. 54 East, Rorie asked if it made sense to annex in a patchwork fashion. If that day comes, would it not make more sense to annex progressively by beginning with the Publix shopping center and then moving east? Rorie asked, citing an example of the logic that should be present when annexation conversations arise.

Rorie also noted the need to be remain aware of the impact of annexation on public safety services.

“What sense does it make to bring in (an area) and have to spend large amounts (of money) for public safety, like fire stations?” Rorie asked.

Bringing the east side topic back to a previous item at the meeting, Rorie suggested that the Lexington area, situated across Hwy. 54 East from Publix, is evolving into what could become another village.

The next council workshop will be held on June 6 and will cover the topic of Peachtree City economics.

And on June 26, the council will hold it first budget workshop.