Council approves Johns Creek Walk II modifications

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JOHNS CREEK – Johns Creek City Council approved the re-zoning application for Johns Creek Walk Phase II at its Dec. 13 meeting.

Johns Creek Walk Phase II has been through several re-zonings, most recently in February 2009. The mixed-use development includes proposed retail, condominiums, hotels and an assisted living center.

The applicant, Medlock Bridge Realty Partners, requested a change in zoning conditions to increase the number of multi-family units and allow two more three-bedroom units. It also requested the elevator requirements be deleted.

Council approved the request for additional units, but kept the elevator requirements in the multi-family units. The elevator requirement won’t apply to the stacked townhome units.

City staff had recommended denial of the request, because the conditions came directly from the public hearing process in previous zonings for the property, said Justin Kirouac, zoning and planning administrator. He added that any policy alterations to the re-zoning should come from City Council directly.

Richard Aaronson, of Atlantic Realty Partners and representative of the project, said the increase in the total number of residential units from 191 to 193 units will allow for two of the dwellings to operate as model homes.

“Those two model units need to change over time,” said Aaronson. “As a result, if the model units are not initially identified as having certificates of occupancy and if we move around the model, we’ll have to move around our certificates of occupancy.”

Aaronson requested the elevator requirement in the “medium-sized building” be deleted because the market lacks demand for it.

“It’s expensive and requires upkeep,” said Aaronson.

Included in the approval, City Council determined it would be a public safety measure to keep the elevator requirement in the medium-sized building.

Aaronson told City Council the development is proposing to build to Green Building Standard, a residential equivalent to LEED certification.

“That is such a tremendous marketing asset,” said Councilman Dan McCabe. “It’s unique…any product you sell has to have some unique characteristics.”

Aaronson told City Council he is hopeful that construction will be initiated in January.

In other City

Council news…

• City Council approved the transfer of $100,000 from the general fund contingency account to the Public Works, Police and Fire departments to provide funds for the solid waste program.

City Council adopted the solid waste ordinance in November and directed staff to create a budget for 2011. Included in the $100,000 transfer is: $5,000 for parks recycling, $45,000 for Keep North Fulton Beautiful, $4,800 for the development of the reporting system and forms/hauler notification, $42,200 for household waste recycling and $3,000 for truck decals.

• City Council voted to amend chapter 34 of the city code, revising outdoor waste usage restrictions and exemptions due to new laws required by the state. Council amended the city code by adding the Water Stewardship Restrictions section, which details a list of outdoor water uses that do not have limitations, such as irrigating personal food gardens, drip irrigation systems and hydro-seeding, among others.

• City Council approved a construction agreement with the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) for the Greenway: Segment 1, Part 2 along Medlock Bridge Road, north of Grove Point Road. Johns Creek received $165,000 of stimulus funds in 2009. The project will construct approximately 500 feet of an eight-foot multi-use trail, retaining wall and handrail along Medlock Bridge Road. The contract with Johnson Landscaping will total $112,402. Of that, $97,812.25 is reimbursable by GDOT. Johns Creek is responsible for $14,590 of the utility relocation cost.

• City Council approved a resolution to authorize a transportation enhancement grant application for bio-retention and landscaping improvements in the city. The city is looking to install bio-retention and landscaping improvements along State Bridge Road and along shoulders and key intersections of State Bridge and Jones Bridge roads. Johns Creek is requesting $1 million, with the city providing a 20 percent match in its grant application.

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