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City's split decision the only surprise on Richmond Reserve
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Richmond Hill’s decision to approve a master plan for Richmond Reserve was hardly a surprise. After all, the city annexed the land expressly for the purpose of bringing the sizeable development within city limits.

But there were some surprises, not least of which was a split decision among council members and the number of homes added to the project.

The split decision - Mayor Richard Davis cast the deciding vote - may show some city officials are at last beginning to question the pace of growth in the city. Or at the least it may show they weren’t happy with a last-minute change that added hundreds of homes to the planned final product.

The project isn’t a done deal yet, however. While the land is now in Richmond Hill city limits, access to the development is on Daniel Siding Road and that’s outside the city’s control.

Some residents who live near the project have expressed opposition to both Richmond Reserve and plans to four-lane the road, and some county officials have said they won’t condemn land of homeowners who live along the route in order to make that happen.

Still, there are signs that county and city officials who are in favor of Richmond Reserve will find a way to get things done. Longtime county commissioner Toby Roberts and city councilman Billy Albritton recently spoke about a need for the county and city to work together while Lamar Smith, the developer behind the project, said without the four-lane road he may pull the plug and try something else.

That’s unlikely at this point and, when all is said and done, our bet is Richmond Reserve will come to fruition.

We leave it up to future generations to decide whether that is a good or bad thing. Because in the end, that’s how growth ought to be measured.

Not so much for what it does for us, but for the benefit or mess it leaves for our children, their children and generations to come.

Bryan County News

Nov. 28, 2007

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