Roswell city council approved the rezoning of the former SuperTarget in East Roswell to become a multi-use development with residential and commercial aspects.
The proposal was approved in a 3 — 2 vote, with council members Mike Palermo and Marcelo Zapata denying the motion.
“I believe it will be a neighborhood destination,” council member Marie Willsey said. “It goes without saying that I want what’s best for my neighborhood. I do support this project.”
The abandoned SuperTarget site sits at 2640 Holcomb Bridge Road. During the June 10 council meeting, officials proposed the East Village shopping center to include 75,000 square feet of commercial, 76 new town homes and 350 new apartments throughout five buildings.
No agreement was reached during the initial meeting, so council members deferred the meeting and allowed the developers two weeks to make changes based on the meeting.
According to the revised plan, the apartment building located at the end of the public space will have an additional level, making it four stories to integrate commercial/office uses. The applicant has indicated commercial and office uses to be located within the building with some live-work units.
The live-work units will be two stories within the four story multi-family building.
The parking within the main open space has been removed and the streets next to the main open space have been eliminated to add additional green space. Parallel parking has also been added along the main road for additional parking. The sidewalk along sidewalk along Holcomb Bridge will be widen to eight feet across and streets will be narrowed.
According to Darin Collier, president of The Worthing Companies, the developer of the site, Collier and his team were able to eliminate three roads and add 16,500 square feet of green space.
Despite the changes made to the new center, the vote was met with groans and distaste from audience members.
“Why are we talking about apartments?” Patsy Vanpelt of Roswell questioned. “Why are we not talking about first time homeowners, seniors who want to downsize, people who want to own? Those are the people that will probably come to a place that is vertically integrated. It’s time for public private blending. It’s time to get creative with how we build.”
According to council member Zapata, around 220 Roswell citizens emailed or wrote letters to him asking for the development to not be approved.
“My job is to represent the will of taxpayers, citizens of Roswell,” Zapata said. “I will focus my discussion (the rezoning) that will benefit the most to the existing Roswell community. We know what we need and want in this community. It’s our community.”
“They would not creating anything pedestrian friendly or anything I feel anyone in Roswell would be proud of,” Palermo said.
Palermo and Zapata stood against the development throughout the entire meeting. After the deciding vote was taken, Palermo called for Mayor Henry to veto the decision. At the time of writing, Mayor Henry has not chosen whether or not to veto the decision.