Is County Commission blackmailing, bullying Peachtree City?

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These are pretty strong words, perhaps — but I’ll let you be the judge of their accuracy. I’m just a concerned citizen.

This has to do with the Fayette County Commission withholding funds for and, further, threatening to withhold services to my city. First, a little background.

There is a dirt road, Crabapple Lane, that leads from Tyrone into the back of our Peachtree City subdivision, Kedron Hills. Until about a year ago, it was used as a shortcut to the Kedron Village shopping area by both motor vehicles and golf carts.

The increased traffic reduced safety along Loring Lane, the curving, main road through our subdivision — which also goes right past a playground/pool area. (Full disclosure, my home faces Loring Lane.) This traffic was only going to get worse, since approximately the same number of new homes as are in Kedron Hills (around 230) were in the early stages of being built near/on Crabapple Lane, in Tyrone.

One of the advertised selling points for these new subdivisions was (and continues to be) access to the Peachtre City cart paths. This “shortcut access” is right through the middle of Kedron Hills, something that is, rightfully, nonstandard — similar outside access to the path system goes around, not through, subdivisions.

The PTC Council understood our safety and quality of life concerns and unanimously voted to close the backdoor shortcut through our subdivision. Fast forward to last month.

The Fayette County Commission decided to disallow Peachtree City to participate in getting over $1.5 million in the federal Transportaion Improvement Program funds because they want Peachtree City to reverse its decision on Crabapple Lane.

The Commission is ignoring the safety issues that led to the original closure — and wants to allow more and more cart traffic to be able to cut through our subdivision, decreasing the safety through our housing area.

The Fayette County Commission has, according to our homeowners’ association, also threatened to withhold services to our city, such as 911 and animal control. Because of this intimidation (money really does “talk,” doesn’t it?), the Peachtree City Council has decided to re-vote June 20 on this issue.

Any discussion has to occur during the meeting on June 4. Residents wanting to speak on this must sign-up before 6 p.m. at the meeting. Also, the Fayette County Commission has this on their agenda for June 13.

This seems like a lot of pressure on our City Council to reverse their decision, based primarily on safety, to keep outside cart and motor vehicle traffic from using our subdivision as a shortcut.

No matter where you might stand on this issue — and I’m speaking directly to my City Council now — if you let the Fayette County Commission influence your decision on a cut-through closure, what happens with an even bigger issue?

Blackmailers? Bullies? I’ll let you decide.

Donald N. Myers

Peachtree City, Ga.

9 COMMENTS

  1. Agree with JP. While we’re at it, let’s close the cart path between Kedron and Smokerise and put gates up at both ends of Smokerise to block cars from cutting thru the subdivision from 54 to Parkway.

    • I certainly understand the Smokerise (and Planterra Ridge) traffic concerns. But at least they get speed bumps/tables to slow traffic down. Loring Lane has no such speed bumps. If PTC were to open the Crabapple Lane Gate, I would hope they would have the sense to install speed bumps/tables on the downhill portion of Loring Lane to slow all vehicle traffic down.

      Regarding the Kedron-to-Smokerise cart path… that section connects two Peachtree City neighborhoods. The Crabapple Lane issue does not connect two Peachtree City neighborhoods, but rather Tyrone and unincorporated Fayette County to Peachtree City. Thus the municipal bickering.

      If the three municipalities could get their heads together and come up with the funding for a cart path to connect Crabapple/Dogwood through Old Senoia Road to World Drive, we’d all be at peace.

  2. I have never understood why Kedron residents were allowed to close the path to begin with. Golf traffic is not any worse thru that neighborhood than any other. The gravel road is a fairly good deterrent to this being used as any kind of short cut unless the destination is IN KEDRON ANWAY…
    First, Kedron residents win the closure and if the closure is not reversed the entire community is losing out on the country resources….. Tyrone residents who want to access our path system pay a much higher tag fee for the use. PTC is also missing out on that revenue.
    Seems to me like Kedron has been allowed to hold the rest of the community hostage. Who’s the blackmailer here?
    #SAVEOURPATHS

    I think we need to bSAVE OUR PATHS.

    • I am a big fan of the PTC path system, and I ride my bike throughout the path network from Kedron to Whitewater, McIntosh Lake, and literally everywhere. And I would love to see cart path connections to Tyrone.

      The problem in Kedron Hills is that there is no cart path or sidewalk system paralleling Loring Lane. Thus, the carts that came in from Crabapple Lane blasted straight downhill on Loring Lane to the entrance, to make their turn on Verandah View to get to the tunnel underneath Peachtree Parkway.

      For the cart traffic, there are options to turn on Greenwood, Kimzey, or Manderstone, to get to the cart path connections at the ends of those streets. However, it’s much more fun for the carts to blast down long curvy downhill that is Loring Lane than to meander down the other streets/paths.

      Thus, the best solution for everyone, Kedron residents and Tyrone residents, is linking the Crabapple Lane/Dogwood Trail corridor to the old Senoia Road path that links to World Drive, giving carts access to both the Kedron shopping center, as well as the full PTC path system. Tyrone residents get their access, and Kedron residents are not flooded with even more traffic on Loring Lane.

      And another clarification for your comment – Kedron residents did not “close the path”. The HOA was approached by PTC whose interest in closing access was due to the developers along Dogwood/Crabapple marketing their houses as “full access to the PTC cart path system”, without having to pay PTC property taxes.

      Of course, Kedron residents were in almost full support of this offer of closing the road, as it came at a time when road work on Dogwood was rerouting Dogwood vehicle traffic down Crabapple Road onto Loring Lane. That’s what made all those new Dogwood/Crabapple residents aware of this convenient shortcut to the Kedron shopping area, and they didn’t stop using the shortcut when Dogwood was reopened.

      Thus, Kedron residents didn’t close the path, PTC did, and due to the actions of Tyrone residents and developers.

  3. First regarding the mention of bullying, should this be true it would be due to the fact that our Council is weak, timid, or at least dysfunctional It consists of five adults, I’ll say no more.
    Regarding Crabapple Lane, many of us remember the litany of Kedron Hills residents lamenting the instances of dangerous behavior by both cars and automobile traffic from our northern neighbor. Because realtors told the homebuyers along Farr Road that they would have unfettered access to Peachtree City paths they took advantage of the cheaper pricing, etc. It wasn’t until a member of Council sent an email to the HOA’s of each subdivisions encouraging them to come to a Council meeting for support to remove the gate against the wishes of a majority of Council.
    As is still the case, access to Peachtree City exists via carts through the Evergreen Church onto the existing roadway that funnels into path that runs by the old World Airways building. Tyrone has yet to assist with access, nor do they plan to do so. To date Crabapple Lane is unpaved, no fire hydrant exists to support those eleven homes, and Peachtree City has gone out of its way to assist the autistic young lady that seems most aggrieved.

  4. Car traffic I can almost get on board with, but cart traffic? At 25mph or less, this is hardly a “safety” issue. And there are plenty of neighborhoods that have “shortcut access” through them. So is the next step closing the path from Smokerise to Kedron as well? Or is this just a Tyrone thing?

  5. I have lived on Loring Lane since 1998, and experienced the great increase in both car and cart traffic leading up to the installation of the Crabapple Lane gate. I applaud the PTC City Council for that decision.

    The Tyrone Mayor is on record, or at least a recorded Town Council meeting, opposing cart path access connection to the Kedron shopping area so their residents will shop in Tyrone. New cart paths along Farr Road that link the neighborhoods in question to the Tyrone shopping center will soon fulfill this desire.

    Crabapple Road is a short gravel back-road that the county never deemed worthy of paving. So what is the Fayette County Commission’s sudden interest in this road such that they would threaten to withhold public safety funding to Peachtree City if the gate is not opened? Does it have to do with placating the special interest of developers? Or is this simply a political control issue?

    I encourage the Peachtree City Mayor and City Council Members to stand up and fight Fayette County Council’s bullying coercion.

    • I have heard of extenuating (other than normal civic) circumstances applying moral influences to the issue. If I were a local government official, I would have difficulty addressing the issue. I think I would opt to deny access (official responsibility), but also continue looking for ways to control access (individual moral responsibility). Life is hard enough without holding an elected office. May God bless our leaders.