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May 14, 2013ROSWELL, Ga. In a 5-1 vote, the Roswell City Council approved the Canton City Walk apartment complex that will replace the Frazier Street apartments on Norcross Street.
With 320 units as a mix of one- and two-bedroom apartments, the $43 million project aims to bring a lot of new blood to downtown Roswell, hoping to attract both the Baby Boomers who are downsizing as well as the Millennials who want walkability and an entertaining, urban lifestyle.
Lennar Homes is betting on both of these groups spending top dollar for their apartments.
Of significant issue with nearby property owners and the city was the number of parking spaces for the five-building complex. There are 322 apartments, but 422 proposed spaces, or just over one per apartment. That could lead to residents parking elsewhere than on the property.
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"They would need to park somewhere else," said Planning Director Brad Townsend. "That's not going to be a good situation for anyone."
Pete Cassidy, with Lennar, assured the council that the people they are attracting will not use all the parking spaces.
"You say it will create problems in Roswell where it hasn't for our other properties," Cassidy said.
Lennar has several similar sites in Atlanta, including the Highlands West Village in Cobb County.
"In an area designated as economically blighted, we will need strong partners and economic engines to keep the area alive and successful," said Steve Stroud, president of the Roswell Business Alliance.
"This project is extremely important and extremely significant," said Councilman Rich Dippolito.
He said when he speaks to developers about the commercial property next to the apartments, where the Southern Skillet used to be, those developers are interested but always ask when the Frazier apartments will be removed.
"This area needs a catalyst," he said. "If somebody is going to invest this amount of money, they have done their homework."
The apartments were approved 5-1, with Councilman Kent Igleheart opposed.
Editor, Milton Herald