The Peachtree City Council last week postponed a yes or no answer to annexing 52 acres on Stagecoach Road adjacent to the new Booth Middle School. The fate of the annexation will await a future council meeting.
Two of the five council members indicated support for annexation as a blocking maneuver against what might happen if hundreds of acres of adjacent areas were developed with current residential zoning in the unincorporated county.
Council members Phil Prebor and Mike King — both in the final months of their final terms — expressed concerns about probable increased traffic on city streets from future county developments.
Both indicated they saw the Stagecoach Road annexation as potentially a way to block further traffic pressures in the area of the new school, with Prebor raising the specter of a new and as-yet-unannounced elementary school close to Booth Middle.
Council members Frank Destadio and Clint Holland both indicated opposition to the project as it was presented.
Mayor Kim Learnard indicated she was not ready to vote for the annexation absent an updated city study of the issue.
Citizen comments were 13-to-1 against the annexation. One resident decried the massive traffic increase on “the Booth Middle School driveway, also known as Carriage Lane.”
Prebor said the problem is the hundreds of acres adjacent to the annexation request even if developed according to the county’s land use plan.
“If we do or don’t, how do we stop the hundreds of acres” from being built out, Prebor asked. “What if an elementary school comes in there?”
Whether annexed or not, the city stands to “eat the increased traffic” from the county areas adjacent, King said. “Do we want to control it or not?”
Holland asked what happened to the large-lot E-R zoning on the city’s east side. He also questioned why the developer doesn’t plan to connect to the city sewer system and instead intends to have individual septic systems, a future threat to the nearby creek.
Destadio said he valued the unanimously negative vote by the city’s Planning Commission last month and would not go against that vote.
The mayor indicated she would not vote for the annexation absent an updated plan for what areas outside the city should be considered for annexation. “This is not in the 2014 boundary study, [and] we need a plan before we move forward on it,” Learnard said.
Prebor said he wanted to delay voting on the annexation until finding out whether the annexation “would block” more traffic produced by further connection to city streets.
The motion to continue until a future council meeting was made by Prebor, seconded by King and received a winning third vote from Learnard. Both having opposed the annexation, Destadio and King voted against the continuation.
Further public discussion on the annexation request will await a future council meeting.