By Joe Earle
and Kris Jensen
Atlanta City Council’s consideration of a proposal to rezone a portion of Colonial Homes for high-density development will be delayed for several weeks, a lawyer for the developer said.
Carl Westmoreland, who represents developer Pope and Land Enterprises Inc., said consideration of the controversial Colonial Homes plan was held up because of procedural problems.
Part of the proposal requires that the city abandon a portion of a street within the apartment complex, he said. City officials needed more time to advertise the road abandonment in order to meet legal requirements for the action.
“They really can’t move one [part of the redevelopment proposal] forward without the other,” Westmoreland said.
Atlanta City Council had been expected to consider the rezoning plan on July 19. Instead, the rezoning probably will be heard in August, Westmoreland said.
Pope and Land proposes adding a five-story building at 240 Colonial Homes Drive N.W. on land now occupied by a portion of Colonial Homes. The new building would be built on high ground. Many of the apartments, built in 1947, now are in an area that has flooded, so redevelopment of those areas is not allowed.
Neighbors rallied against Pope and Land’s plan, saying that the city should require the developer to raze existing apartments to create green space and combat flooding in order to be allowed to increase residential density on another portion of the property. Such trade-offs are required under Atlanta’s BeltLine plans, they said.
Pope and Land disagreed.
On June 1, members of Neighborhood Planning Unit C voted 84-2 to recommend the proposal be denied. On June 10, the Atlanta zoning review board voted 5-4 to recommend the city approve the plan.
City Councilman Aaron Watson, chair of the council’s Zoning Committee, met with residents July 8 about the project. “I had a great meeting with some of the neighbors about the Colonial Homes project, and I share some of their concerns, especially when it comes to the potential water overflow,” he said.