Neighbors: Don't let DeKalb school cut trees

DeKalb County commissioners will have to decide if they want to waive the county’s flood plain regulations to allow the Marist School to expand.

On Tuesday, commissioners voted to hold off on issuing a permit to expand the Catholic school, which houses about 1,075 students.

Several residents spoke against the Ashford Dunwoody Road school’s proposal to cut down trees in the flood plain to build two athletic practice fields. Kathryn Gable and others argued it would damage the neighborhood and cause more debris to wash into nearby Nancy Creek.

“I’ve seen so much destruction of the flood plain because of the school,” said Gable, a resident for 40 years. “For them to consider to tear out trees in the flood plain is appalling.”

The school’s lawyer, Kathryn Zickert, said Marist plans to replant additional trees as part of the expansion, which also includes a bigger gym and additional parking.

“We’re busting at the seams,” Zickert told the commission. “We’re not trying to increase enrollment.”

Commissioners said they are waiting for the school to provide more information on how to protect the flood plain before moving forward.

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