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Catholic church gets first OK from Gainesville council
Campus will include 1,000-seat sanctuary
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In other business

City Council on Tuesday appointed Carmen Delgado to replace John Snyder on the Planning and Appeals Board and reappointed Jane Fleming.

In other news, council approved making Dyer Street one-way, allowing travel only from Ridgewood Avenue to North Avenue.

Council also voted to prohibit parking on the east side of Dyer Street.

Meanwhile, Hillcrest Avenue will not become a one-way street, but the city plans to post signs banning cars from blocking the street, then follow up with police enforcement to address concerns with emergency vehicle access.

Gainesville City Council gave its initial approval Tuesday for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta to proceed with building a church campus on Smith Road near the corner of McEver and Browns Bridge roads.

A second and final approval is scheduled for later this month.

The church campus will include a 1,000-seat sanctuary in its first phase, which could take about 14 months to complete once construction begins, and is meant to serve a growing population of Catholics in and around Gainesville.

“We believe it to be a platform to serve the growing needs of the Catholic community,” said Andrew Halloran, a civil engineer and president of the Marietta-based Cornerstone Site Consultants, which represents to the church’s interest in the property.

The city is already home to St. Michael Catholic Church, but many Catholics still drive to neighboring city parishes for Sunday Mass.

The total campus calls for a larger sanctuary, social hall, administrative offices, community meeting rooms, classrooms, a clergy residency, commercial kitchen, food pantry and more.

Halloran said church officials have received positive feedback from the property owners and agree to all conditions imposed by the city, which includes a 50-foot or longer vegetated buffer between the church and neighboring single-family homes to the east and west.

Additionally, construction after the first phase of development will require a revised traffic impact study to determine if further improvements are necessary.

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