Milton approves Deerfield Green plan

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MILTON - After multiple deferrals and a lot of work from builder Bowen Family Homes, city staff and concerned community members, City Council approved Dec. 7 a modified site plan for the Deerfield Green townhouse community at the corner of Webb and Morris Roads.
Bowen wanted the city to approve dozens of units with front entry garages instead of the rear-entry models approved by Fulton County in 2005.
A retaining wall on the property made it impossible to build the rear-entry units with enough space for residents to safely get into and out of their garages, company spokesman Corbitt Woods said.
However, city staff and community volunteers said that would change the look of the neighborhood to the detriment of the area. So the plan was sent back to the drawing board in November.
Community Development Director Tom Wilson said he recommended the new plan hammered out by everyone because it reflected community concerns and mitigated the visual effects.
“This does everything possible to screen those garages,” said Wilson.
As part of the plan, units 136 to 163 will have the front-entry garages. Of those, 18 will be set back 20 feet from the end of the sidewalk to ensure drivers can park entirely within their driveway and not hang over into the walking area. The rest will be set back 18 feet.
In addition, Bowen will plant landscaping near the homes to shield the front-entry models from passers-by.
The plan was approved 5-0, with councilwomen Karen Thurman and Tina D’Aversa absent.
“I think this was a good exercise in working together,” said Mayor Joe Lockwood.

In other news, council:
Approved unanimously an ordinance regulating the location, placement and leasing of wireless telecommunications facilities. As part of the ordinance, council approved: applying Milton’s overlay standards to all towers to the extent they are not in conflict with the ordinance itself; a minimum 20-foot landscaping strip for towers; scheduling two public hearings for tower placement; adding 30 days to applicant time lines; and creating a maximum tower height of 150 feet.
Approved unanimously the 2010 council calendar for meetings and work sessions.
Approved unanimously a multi-year contract to purchase fire department uniforms from Riverside Uniforms.
Approved unanimously a change to the contract with URS Corporation not to exceed $10,000 for the company’s work in conducting emergency bridge inspections.
Approved unanimously $581,263.70 in contracts with C.W. Matthews Contracting Company Inc., and Kimley Horn and Associates Inc., for the reconstruction of Morris Road from Deerfield Parkway to Webb Road. The project will be competed when there are 10 to 12 days of sunny, warm weather for optimal paving conditions, said Carter Lucas, Milton’s head of Public Works.
Approved unanimously an intergovernmental agreement by and among the cities of Alpharetta, Dunwoody, Johns Creek, Milton, Roswell and Sandy Springs for the acquisition of color aerial photography and light detection and ranging (LiDAR) data.
The photography will be used for a variety of city projects, including mapping.
The multi-city contract saved Milton up to 30 percent for the work, said City Attorney Ken Jarrard.
Milton makes up 20.5 percent of the land photographed, so that is the portion for which the city will pay when the cost is determined. If the amount is more than the city is willing to pay, it can opt out, said Jarrard.