At its regular meeting and public hearing held on Monday, Sept. 14, the Dawsonville Planning Commission heard the concerns of local residents worried about a potential new subdivision near Perimeter Road in Dawson County.
The proposed project would annex and rezone a 74.865-acre tract into the city of Dawsonville, in order to allow for the development of a 124 lot residential subdivision. The residential project is currently proposed to be located along Perimeter Road, with possible entrances along Perimeter and Turner Drive.
During the public hearing, several local residents came forward to voice concerns about the proposed development and the possible traffic congestion that the project could bring to the area.
“I want to speak in reference to the subdivision’s location, not necessarily the subdivision because we are growing and it’s inevitable that we’re gonna keep growing,” one local resident said. “It’s more of the congestion that concerns me; it makes it extremely crowded.”
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Several citizens who live off of Turner Drive, where the proposed second entrance to the development would go, came forward to voice their concerns as well.
“We have multiple subdivisions being built,” a resident who lives off of Turner Drive said. “All of this creates problems already that we’ve dealt with for years and it’s just gonna continually get worse. We don’t want our road annexed in, and we don’t want to be a part of this subdivision.”
Another Turner Drive resident said that she is concerned about the entrance being built on the road because that would entail widening the road to accommodate the new entrance.
“You would have to widen that road which would cut into our yards and our wellbeing and our enjoyment of our property,” the homeowner said.
After the meeting, property owner and development spokesman Michael Turner said that he plans to address these concerns, as well as any others that residents might have, with the residents directly.
“We welcome their input; I’m not upset about them complaining,” Turner said. “ I want to meet with them personally and address those issues and maybe we can find some common ground, and if we can’t that’s okay too; at least we had a chance to discuss it in a civil way.”
According to Turner, the proposed development will be much different than it would be if it were in a different area of the county, because a lot of the plan is dictated by the land’s topography.
“Some of it is unusable because it’s stream buffers or the topography is too steep,” Turner said, “So we’re proposing about 2.4 homes to the acre which is well below the zoning requirement.”
Turner said that he wants to preserve the beauty of Dawson County while at the same time developing the property to its fullest potential.
“My family has been here for 200 years; I grew up here and graduated from Dawson County High School,” Turner said. “And you’d have to have special skills to build and develop on Dawsonville property because of the topography.”
The 74.865 acre residential property is the start of what Turner hopes can turn into a long-term project for the 492 acres he owns in the area.
“We want to plan out a long-term mixed use community development which would probably have a new school site for the Board of Education,” Turner said, “We’d have some business sites and some mixed-use residential sites, but that’s probably a 20-year process.”
But for now, the start of Turner’s project is the 124 home residential property, which he is requesting to have annexed into the city of Dawsonville.
The planning commission postponed any decisions about the property or city annexation until its next meeting on Nov. 9. Another public hearing will accompany the November meeting.