BUFORD — City of Buford Planning and Zoning board members gave the OK to a motion Tuesday night to annex into the city and rezone approximately 82 acres in Hall County situated along Frazier Road and abutting Interstate 985, accessible by Golden Parkway in Buford.
Peoples Bank & Trust, holder of the property, requested the parcel be rezoned for light industry from residential as well as be annexed into Buford to increase its marketability as it continues to offer it for sale.
According to the bank’s executive vice president, Ted Williams, there is no current prospective buyer for the parcel and the rezoning would be consistent with the adjacent property.
Several homeowners from the Lexington Woods subdivision attended and voiced concerns with the rezoning request, fearing property values would be affected and that the two-lane Frazier Road would be used as a cut-through for vehicles avoiding the intersection of Lanier Islands Parkway and Atlanta Highway. Nine subdivision properties are immediately connected to the property under consideration, according to the homeowners present. Planning and Zoning Commissioner Robert Perkins said he was aware of at least six.
“There are two portions of this property which directly abut (the subdivision),” Williams said, “but it is not our request that there will even be access through the subdivision.” Nor would there be any request, by the bank, for the property to have access directly to Frazier Road. “We’re not proposing any development at this time,” Williams said. “We’re not the developer. We’re the landowner. And we’re not opposed that a stipulation be made that there be no access. We feel like (the rezoning) is in the best interest of the property at this time.”
Perkins received homeowners’ concerns but noted, “Unfortunately throughout time ... commercial comes in. They’re trying to market a commodity.”
According to Williams, there has been a significant increase in interest in commercially zoned properties in the Golden Parkway area. In addition, when the original loan agreement on the acreage was made in 2003, it was brought to the bank as potential for commercial development, Williams said.
“We feel that it is in the best interest of the property at this time,” he said.
Buford City Manager Bryan Kerlin gave the official nod on the part of the city, noting that an annexation and subsequent development would provide additional revenue that would help offset education costs of the city’s school system.
Homeowners present were not opposed to annexation.
Stipulations to the motion, acceptable to Williams as Peoples Bank & Trust representative, included: Future structures would be constructed of brick or stone, existing streams on the property would remain undisturbed and there would be no entry to the parcel from Frazier Road.