Peachtree City Council lifts moratorium to allow for Calistoa rezoning request

Peachtree City Manager Jon Rorie (R) confers with City Attorney Ted Meeker at a City Council meeting. Photo/Cal Beverly.
Peachtree City Manager Jon Rorie (R) confers with City Attorney Ted Meeker at a City Council meeting. Photo/Cal Beverly.

Lifting moratorium is not same as approving a later rezoning, city says; council asks for $160,000 grant to plan a ‘City Centre’; says no to county ideas for TDK Extension — 

Emphasizing that the Peachtree City Council was not making a rezoning decision one way or the other, members voted 5-0 March 21 to lift a multi-family moratorium to allow city staff to study a rezoning application for Calistoa, a multi-use project proposed alongside Lake McIntosh and the city’s airport, Falcon Field.

Despite social media posting about the project, City Manager Jon Rorie said the vote was “a procedural due process” to allow the property owner to present its case for the development.

He and City Attorney Ted Meeker said they could not recall any instance in which the council voted against lifting the moratorium since its inception in 1999.

The 5-0 vote allows the developer to file for rezoning and make its case for rezoning with city staff, the Planning Commission and later the City Council.

As reported last week in The Citizen, GVI-Peachtree City, LLC, is proposing to build a mixed-use complex consisting of office, retail, single-family and multi-family uses.

As proposed, Calistoa Lake McIntosh would be a mixed-use destination by Pace Lynch and North Carolina-based Crescent Communities, and situated on 37 acres adjacent to Lake McIntosh and Planterra Golf Club.

“Mixed-use environments offer employees more than just an office, it offers them a community. They can walk to restaurants, retail or even home,” Pace said previously. “They can go outside and enjoy a greenspace or walking trail. These benefits of a mixed-use environment are why employers are interested in communities such as Calistoa Lake McIntosh and why we are currently in active discussions with several large corporate users seeking a new headquarters site.”

Commenting on some of the expectations for the project, Pace said that in addition to offices, Calistoa Lake McIntosh will feature residential offerings that are inspired by the modern farmhouse, showcasing historically-rooted architecture with a modern flair.

“From apartments in five-story elevator buildings to cottages and village single-family homes with front porches for socializing with neighbors, Calistoa offers a mix of for-sale and rental housing for millennials, families and empty-nesters alike,” Pace noted.

Now the developer can file an official rezoning request with city staff and later appear before the Planning Commission and council.

Council votes to apply for $160,000 ARC grant to plan a City Centre

Mayor Vanessa Fleisch wanted everyone to know: The city may not get the whole $160,000 it’s asking for from the Atlanta Regional Commission.

Peachtree City Mayor Vanessa Fleisch. File photo.
Peachtree City Mayor Vanessa Fleisch. File photo.

But even if it does, she noted, the most the city will pay for the study is an already budgeted $32,000.

Whatever the final sum is, the city will use it to study how to make the transition from an area with two churches and several retail businesses to a still-to-be defined “City Centre” that, as revealed so far, would be a mixed use development that included some living spaces above retail and office buildings, known as a live-work-walk development. According to city plans, the change would also involve the realignment of Willowbend Road.

The area involved in the study comprises the city-owned Drake Field, City Library, City Hall, the sites now occupied by the First Presbyterian Church and the First Baptist Church, The Bridge community center, the Willowbend retail center and, across Hwy. 54, the Aberdeen Village Center, home to Partners II Pizza, Y-Knot bar and several smaller retailers.

City planner Robin Cailloux told the council that the study might disclose that “a bunch of retail might not work” in the new city center because of “real-world” market forces.

The council vote was 5-0 to seek the full ARC grant.

Council says no to TDK Extension

United in opposition to a proposed new cross-creek highway link, the Peachtree City Council voted last Thursday to loudly say no to supporting what has been called the TDK Extension.

Talked about for several years, the project would involve building a bridge across Line Creek for either a two- or four-lane connector to east Coweta County. That would provide another east-west link for traffic that now uses Ga. Highway 54 in Peachtree City and Ga. Highway 85 in southern Fayette.

“Coweta must do its part,” City Manager Jon Rorie said in prefacing the resolution asking the Fayette County Commission to delete the TDK Connector from the Fayette County Comprehensive Transportation Plan.

He explained that Coweta has a responsibility to engineer and build some alternate ways for its residents to get to Interstate 85 rather than funnel vehicles through the traffic-jammed Hwys. 54-74 intersection. One often-mentioned alternative is to use Fischer and Minix roads to provide a Coweta bypass to Peachtree City.

Rorie said Coweta officials needed to meet with Fayette and Peachtree City officials to work on a joint solution. “We are a border town,” Rorie said.

The council voted 5-0 for a resolution opposing creating a new way into Peachtree City that would intersect Hwy. 74 at Crosstown Road.

The council also approved a classification change for a long-existing commercial center off Kelly Drive and Dividend Drive. The center, which includes Mimi’s Good Food restaurant, was grandfathered in when the city rewrote its industrial zoning ordinance. The rezoning brings the center into compliance with the current rules.