Applications filed to the City of Cartersville indicate the same developer behind the Kroger Marketplace shopping center has plans for another project along East Main Street — a proposed 200-unit apartment complex that would abut the grocery store on a roughly 16.7-acre parcel.
Applicant Cherokee Main Street III, LLC — whose registered agent is Robert H. Ledbetter, Jr., of Rome-based R.H. Ledbetter Properties, LLC — seeks the rezoning of the tract from G-C general commercial and mining to a MF-14 multifamily residential classification.
The same applicant is also requesting the annexation of 1.945 acres of Bartow County-zoned mining property into the City of Cartersville, with the intentions of likewise rezoning it to the MF-14 classification.
“That’s beyond the existing detention pond that’s behind the Kroger,” said City of Cartersville Planning and Development Director Randy Mannino. “And they’re adding a small tract behind that to enlarge the detention.”
Mannino said one conceptual rendering of the proposed development depicts “four or five buildings” clustered around a swimming pool amenity. However, he said the general layout doesn’t give any indications as to what the apartment complex’s combined square footage may resemble.
“My guess would be that about mid this week, probably Wednesday, there will be a full staff report and it will include site plans,” he said.
At the moment, Mannino said there doesn’t appear to be any brands associated with the proposed development. Details on potential multiple-use integrations, he said, are similarly scarce.
“It is right on the overall site, with the access and interconnectivity with the Kroger and the Kroger outparcels,” he said. “But that’s about it.”
Mannino said that the feeder road into the proposed apartment complex does dead-end near the back of some additional property, noting that it could possibly be extended in the future.
As far as a potential monetary investment amount for the project, Mannino said he couldn’t even speculate about a possible price tag. Nor did he pinpoint anything in the applications detailing a possible construction timetable for the apartment complex.
Specifics on the floorspace of the units — and how many bedrooms will be included in those units — likewise remain a mystery.
The development would have to comply with standards established by the City’s Main Street Overlay, which Mannino said primarily revolve around aesthetics. And although the apartment complex is being built within the Kroger Marketplace shopping center — and with the apparent backing of the very same developer — Mannino said the proposed multifamily development would likely not be eligible for tax allocation district (TAD) funding.
“We’re going to have to run that through our City attorney’s office,” he said.
Such large-scale apartment projects have a mixed track record of success in Cartersville. A proposal for a roughly 300-unit apartment complex off Center Road was ultimately abandoned after fierce blowback from residents last year, although the city council did vote unanimously last month to approve a rezoning request for a 210-unit complex that would be constructed east of Interstate 75 off Main Street along Overlook Parkway.
At this point, Mannino said he does not know if the local government has received any comments on the proposed project from Cartersville City Schools. Once received, however, he said the responses will be incorporated into an analysis of the project’s feasibility.
So far, Mannino said he hasn’t reviewed any submissions from the applicant detailing potential price ranges for the units. How long the complex would take for full buildout, he said, depends on how aggressive the developer pursues the project.
“It’s something that can be completed in probably 12-18 months,” he said. “But again, that’s going to be up to the developer.”
The proposed project, Mannino said, is another indication of just how high demand is for new developments on the east side of Main Street, especially “upper echelon-type products.”
“That’s where you’re going to find undeveloped property, the larger tracts of undeveloped property,” he said. “The majority of the corridor is already zoned commercial, so we are anticipating continued commercial growth along it … you’ve got a four-lane, median-divided roadway that serves it and connects right to the interchange for Interstate 75.”
The City of Cartersville Planning Commission is set to hear the applicant’s requests at a public meeting scheduled Aug. 11 at 5:30 p.m. at 10 North Public Square. A first reading before the city council is scheduled for Aug. 20, with a second reading — and council vote — lined up for Sept. 3.