A developer asking to add some 85 homes near Buckhead East in South Bryan asked the Bryan County Planning and Zoning Commission to table the request until October.
The request was made by the developer’s attorney, William Glass, at the outset of Thursday night’s special called public hearing at the South Bryan Administrative Complex. The request was approved.
Glass said developer Charles Way and East Buckhead LLC want to spend more time addressing concerns expressed by residents and Bryan County Planning and Zoning Director Jeff Adams, who is on vacation.
But Glass offered to answer questions at Thursday's hearing, and said the proposed development is called Lenox and will be a separate subdivision from Buckhead East, with its own amenities. Lenox will largely target senior citizens and “empty nesters,” he said, and dedicate 50 of the homes for that demographic through design and marketing.
Glass said that and the fact developers were willing to delay building homes until a new elementary school was built should ease residents concerns of school overcrowding. McAllister Elementary, which sits near Buckhead East and is only three years old, is already over capacity.
He said developers have hired independent traffic engineers to help find solutions to congestion there, one of which would be a better traffic circle at Highway 144, Veterans Memorial Parkway and Belfast River Road.
Glass' claims were met with some skepticism by at least some of the approximately 40 people who attended the special meeting, which was held in South Bryan to allow East Buckhead residents to attend.
Several spoke out, citing everything from traffic, vacant homes in East Buckhead, quality of life, lack of infrastructure and school overcrowding as reasons they opposed the development. Like the Bryan County Commission, meetings of the Planning and Zoning Commission alternate location between the north and south end of the county. September’s regular meeting was held Tuesday in Pembroke.
Another South Bryan development known as Watergrass is also on hold awaiting approval from the state as a development of regional impact, according to Bryan County Manager Ben Taylor. That planned unit development off Belfast River Road calls for 190 lots on 140.7 acres.
The final say on any development in Bryan County rests with the county commission. The planning and zoning board can only recommend the commission approve or disapprove a developer's request.
More on this story in the Sept. 13 issue of the Bryan County News.