Snellville, GA - One of two developers proposing massive multi-family complexes for the city of Snellville try to relieve concerns of local residents during an informational meeting at city hall.
Lynwood Development says the 400 apartments, townhomes, and houses in its proposed Eastside Village would be geared towards older residents and serving the professionals who work at nearby Eastside Medical Center.
But those attending the meeting, many of whom were wearing maroon shirts in a show of support for Brookwood High School, left unconvinced. They believe the development, along with another calling for an additional 250 apartments, would devastate the Brookwood cluster.
“My son is 4-years-old (and) he’s getting ready to go into Brookwood Elementary next year; our primary concern is the school will be overcrowded or that we will be redistricted right out of Brookwood,” says Jennifer Papadatos.
Others like Brent Fowler are also concerned over the increase in traffic in an already heavily congested area.
“Those of us who live here, we already know what traffic is like pulling out of those very same streets they’re proposing building this development in,” he tells WSB’s Sandra Parrish.
Marian Adeimy, attorney for Lynwood, says the developer is already working on a traffic study of the area to provide to the city. She says the proposed development is half the density of what the property is currently zoned for which is retirement housing.
“What hopefully it will show is that this development produces less traffic than what’s currently allowed on the property,” she says.
As for the impact on local schools, Adeimy says that can’t be the focus when it comes to rezoning issues.
“That can’t be the sole reason from a constitutional prospective to allow development or to not, because a lot of the subdivisions that these folks live in wouldn’t be here,” she says.
But she says the Gwinnett school board is currently looking at how schools zones would be affected.
It was the first public meeting since wind of the developments got out a little more than a week ago.
A community-sponsored meeting is planned at Brookwood High School Aug. 14.
Meantime, the city of Snellville has hired a consultant to look at both proposed developments. Spokesman Brian Arrington says it’s not unusual when making a major decision to bring in outside help.
“A project like this that affects a large number of residents and there’s also a large number of homes that are being built, we obviously want to make sure that whatever decision we make is made properly and with all the information we have available,” he says.
The Snellville Planning Commission is set to take up the rezoning request Aug. 26. The full city council could then decide by the end of September or early October.