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Rezoning hot topic at council meeting
by Bobby Tedder
October 04, 2013 04:32 PM | 1100 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Rezoning disputes of varying scale remain at the forefront of Sandy Springs city government business.

At issue during Tuesday’s Sandy Springs City Council meeting was applicant Jeffrey Spillane’s request to construct five single-family homes at 4920 and 4940 High Point Road. Its proposed properties feature a perceived differentiation of sorts regarding lot size from neighboring sites.

“This could be precedent setting,” said District 5 Councilman Tibby DeJulio. “Up and down High Point Road you’ve got all these big homes on big lots.

“We just don’t want to change the character of the neighborhood [and] … start splitting up all these houses.”

The matter ate up a fair amount of discussion time before council members rendered their decision.

“I know y’all are concerned about setting a precedent,” Spillane told council members. “There are lots up through High Point on the west side that front High Point that are not 1-acre sites.”

Spillane referenced the neighborhood’s current “hodgepodge of zoning” to further illustrate his point. Officials were at odds with him over a faulty survey performed on-site.

“We went through and met with all the landowners. … They thought [the lots] were just underneath 2 acres,” he said. “Well, it’s a [few tenths of an acre] less than that because the survey[or] made a mistake.

“I know this is controversial. You probably don’t want to vote this in thinking that the neighborhood is going to penalize you for it, but what I’d ask you to do is look at what common sense would dictate.”

Council members voted unanimously (6-0) to defer the matter, sending Spillane’s application to the city planning commission for more scrutiny. Planners will be tasked with determining the lot sizes of all the lots along High Point Road.

“I’m inclined to deny it, but the one thing that I heard from [the applicant] that I think is worthy of some additional facts is if the west side of High Point Road is truly made up of 1-acre lots,” said District 3 Councilman Chip Collins. “Because if it’s not and there really are half-acre and three-fourths quarter acre lots, … then it changes things.”
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