Members of the Adairsville Unified Zoning Board voted unanimously Monday afternoon to recommend approval of the rezoning of about 48.5 acres along Joe Frank Harris Parkway from general industrial to C-2 general commercial.
Adairsville City Manager Pam Madison said the rezoning may pave the way for a new sports and community center. The property is situated to the north of International Parkway and south of Hardwood Ridge Parkway.
Representing the applicant at the public meeting was Ty Mitcham.
“It’s been a couple of years coming down the pipe as far as thinking through this, developing the vision,” he said. “It seems to be an appropriate area versus a tertiary road, where we don’t quite get the traffic counts.”
At this point, Mitcham said there is no timeline for developments on the property.
“Basically, we’re trying to secure the land,” he said. “And once we secure the land, we then want to be able to take time and kind of walk through what a complete plan is.”
Mitcham said the the proposed development would have a heavy emphasis on youth sports and recreational activity, indicating the final product could have swimming pools, splash pads and multi-use buildings.
Also speaking in favor of the proposed development was Norman Parker.
“It’s a small, scaled-down LakePoint, where you’ve got, say, a 200 by 600, 800-foot building that’s got six or seven basketball courts, it’s got an indoor/outdoor track,” he told board members.
The development, Parker continued, may also include amenities like weight rooms and baseball/softball fields.
According to Bartow County Board of Tax Assessors data, the current property owner is New York-based HJ Brothers Realty, LLC. The parcel has a 2020 fair market value of $1 million.
Neither Mitcham or Parker mentioned the applicant behind the rezoning request by name at Monday evening’s meeting. Nor was the applicant specified by any City of Adairsville officials or meeting documents.
“If he wants to subdivide it at some point in time, then I think he should be able to do that,” Parker said. “But that’s not in the plans right now … this could be a couple of years project.”
As Madison noted, the requested “downzoning” would not be necessary to bring the project to fruition.
“They can technically do what they’re asking for as it is currently zoned,” she said. “They thought it would be more acceptable to the community to have a less-intensive zoning for this type of a facility … the residents have a big concern about a lot of industrial properties, especially when they have intense uses.”
Madison said the applicant has consented to more expansive buffers than are required by the City's C-2 zoning regulations, noting that the buffers along the eastern half of the northern property line are set at 100 feet and those on the western half set at 75 feet.
Several board members, however, raised concerns about the potential commercial uses that may be constructed on the property.
Representatives for the applicant agreed to two additional conditions for the proposed development: a stipulation precluding bars, night clubs or taverns from opening on the property and a provision barring diesel engine and metal fabrication operations from taking place on the parcel.
The development, Parker said, would involve no public funding.
“We’ll have the right architects, engineers and things that will build it where it needs to be,” he said. “This is a large undertaking that he’s willing to put his money there and not for anything else. And it’s for the community and the City of Adairsville.”
A first reading of the proposed rezoning is currently scheduled for an Adairsville City Council meeting on Oct. 15 at 7 p.m. at 116 Public Square.