Tempers flare over mixed-use plan for flood plain

Developers have a green light for a mixed-use plan for 60 acres off Cascade Road just outside I-285, after a bickering Fulton County commission voted 4-3 in favor of a zoning change.

Collaborative Firm, LLC, on behalf of Grey Partners LLC, Sam Cores Inc., and New Hope Estates, LLC,  got approval this week for 227 single family units and townhomes, 70 apartment units and 65,000 square feet of office and retail space. Nearby residents, along with south Fulton Commissioner Bill Edwards, raised concerns about traffic and the property being in a flood plain.

Edwards' motion to deny failed 3-3, with Commissioner Lynne Riley not voting. At one point, commissioners Emma Darnell and Tom Lowe debated whether irresponsible zoning led to the flooding of New Orleans' Ninth Ward in Hurricane Katrina. Edwards and Chairman John Eaves, whose seats are side by side, got into such a heated exchange that Edwards slammed his papers down and the two men left their chairs and stood on opposite ends of the dais. Eaves lived in the area until 2008, and said he supports the plan because it will create jobs and economic development. Edwards later apologized to the audience.

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