Brookhaven residents seemed pleased with updates to the proposed mixed-use development at the corner of Dresden Drive and Appalachee Drive, but still are not happy with more apartments coming into the area.
At a June 1 meeting at Lynwood Park Recreation Center, representatives from developer Terwilliger Pappas met with a group of some 30 residents to discuss plans to rezone 1411, 1417, 1423 and 1427 Dresden Drive to allow for the construction of 121 apartment units, a restaurant and retail shops on the nearly 4-acre site. The site, next to Haven Restaurant, is currently undeveloped. The project is slated to go before the Planning Commission on July 6.
This development, named Solis Dresden City Homes, is being proposed at the same time as another mixed-use development, Dresden Village, that includes 206 apartments, is being proposed. Also on the horizon are some 700 apartments that are part of the proposed Brookhaven-Oglethorpe MARTA mixed-use development. And residents in the surrounding neighborhoods say they’ve had enough with the apartments being built near their family homes.
“I’m puzzled why we need more apartments,” said Shri Ranganathan who lives on Canoochee Drive. “I think it just adds to the overall congestion.”
Madeline Wong of the Village Park neighborhood said she was much happier with the current design over the original design and would even consider living at the development herself — but only if the residential units were owner-occupied and not rentals.
“I don’t love it, but they have made some substantial changes,” Wong said. “I’ve talked to a lot of people who want to live in Brookhaven, but they do not want to rent.”
Donna Shrager, who also lives in Village Park, said she is pretty much sold on the development.
“I support it being developed smartly and they are working toward that,” she said. “They listened to us. I would love to have all of it be owner-occupied because there is pride in ownership — if these were all owner-occupied then everyone would be in support.”
Original plans from the developer Terwilliger Pappas, included a 5-story building with 121 apartments and a 5,000 square-feet restaurant and 4,000 square-feet of other retail.
Developers said at the June 1 meeting they agreed to remove one floor from the plans at the request of residents; however the Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay District currently only allows for four floors. The new plan also includes replacing some traditional apartments with eight townhouse-style apartments to give a better transition into the neighborhoods behind the development.
“This will be a nice transitional plane to blend into the neighborhood,” said Woody Galloway, attorney for the developers.
The once U-shaped development that opened up to a central area with a swimming pool has also been enclosed as a way to shut out from neighborhoods any potential noise and bright lights from the complex, the developers added. The complex will have direct access from Dresden Drive and limited access on Appalachee Drive.
The developers also added 100 parking spaces to the project to now include 314 spaces — 200 spaces will be for residents and 50 spaces for the restaurant, 20 spaces for retail shops and 44 spaces for the public.
A “live-work space” has been added to the plans to give a place for residents to work.
The apartments in this development are geared toward “older, more sophisticated renters who appreciate walkability” of the area to local restaurants and stores, said Greg Power of Terwilliger Pappas. Rent would be an average of $2,300 a month with the townhouse style apartments going for perhaps $4,000, he said. Total cost of the project is approximately $45 million and would take up to 20 months to complete.