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Hotel, other retail near Exit 14 in South Hall gets initial OK
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Traffic passes under the new Exit 14 bridge Tuesday, April 16, 2019, as construction on the Martin Road interchange continues. - photo by Scott Rogers

A nearly 15-acre retail site at Interstate 985’s new Exit 14 got approval Monday night from the Oakwood Planning Commission.

Nothing specific has been planned for the site at 4207 Martin Road, which is at the corner of Martin Road and Falcon Parkway/Ga. 13, said B.R. White, city planner, at the July 15 meeting.

“It’s a speculative rezoning,” he told the commission.

Still, the applicant, Tyler Gaines of Atlanta, sees potential in the site, especially as the interchange is nearing completion. The Georgia Department of Transportation has said Exit 14 is scheduled for completion on Aug. 31.

“Now that the new exit … is being installed, the highest and best usage for the road frontage is a commercial use,” states Gaines’ rezoning application, which now goes to the Oakwood City Council for final consideration.

“Allowing for commercial uses at a crucial intersection will provide convenient eating, shopping and banking opportunities for nearby residents.”

The property’s residential zoning “is no longer appropriate with the connection to I-985,” the application says.

Gaines’ request — rezoning the property from multifamily residential to highway business — is the first of its kind at the new interchange.

The rezoning could open up the site to various kinds of development, including restaurants, hotel, bank, pharmacy and gas station.

The interchange on the Oakwood-Flowery Branch border will connect Martin Road east of I-985 to H.F. Reed Industrial Parkway at Thurmon Tanner Parkway west of I-985.

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