Tuesday, April 24, 2012
North American Properties is working on getting another property's vested rights to apartments that haven't been built so it can have its 250 units over retail.
CORRECTION: Statements made by Linda Persing have been updated and corrected in this version of the article. Read her comments below the article for more on the issues and her interests and concerns. The mud pit of shame may finally become history, as Alpharetta City Council approved a master plan amendment to allow Avalon to be built. The North American Properties' development may not open on its anticipated date in October 2013, said the company's managing partner, Mark Toro. But now it's likely that it will be built. North American Properties announced it had come to an agreement with another developer for its rights to apartments, in exchange for the use of commercial space in the Avalon project. That cleared the way for the project's …
Monday, April 23, 2012
Alpharetta City Council would have to approve any transfer of development rights–in this case apartments–so North American Properties has no guarantees for its development.
Since Alpharetta doesn't have an ordinance on its books that allows for transferring development rights, North American Properties would have no guarantees that it could get rights to apartments from another site. The city's Planning Commission recommended this as the way the developer could build its mixed-use Avalon project at the former Prospect Park site and still keep the 250 rental units above retail shops it says are critical. "We don't have a TDR [transfer of development rights] ordinance on our books. So absent that ordinance, there's not a smooth, clean process about which to do a transfer of development rights," said Assistant City Administrator James Drinkard. What will you tell City Council during tonight's Public Hearing at …
Monday, April 16, 2012
In a letter to Alpharetta City Council, Kyle Tripp says the renting vs. owning debate is an oversimplified analysis.
I support North American Properties' proposal per their requested stipulations including the 'for rent' units. I feel that the argument for or against the project should not be reduced to a renting vs owning debate as it was framed in Planning. Avalon has too much to offer the city to be reduced to this oversimplified analysis. The current 2030 Comprehensive Plan suggesting an 85/15 split between owned vs. rent is largely pie in the sky wishful thinking. The city's own report states that it would take 35 years to achieve this ratio. You risk killing a mixed use, smart growth concept over a proposition that may not happen in our lifetime. We all know the ratio is out of reach so to base your decision on an unobtainable goal is nonsensical. …
Friday, April 6, 2012
North American Properties' Mark Toro says the 83-acre mixed use development can't be built under the recommended conditions, but he's happy the application has moved forward.
Avalon can't be built with the conditions recommended by the Alpharetta Planning Commission, according to Mark Toro, managing partner of North American Properties in Atlanta. But Toro said he was glad the application to amend the Prospect Park master plan had moved forward after the vote at City Hall. It is scheduled to be heard by City Council on April 23. Planning Commissioner Nancy Bristol took the lead on how the board approached the conditions suggested by Community Development staff on which North American Properties didn't agree. The biggest was allowing any rental units on the mixed-use development. Avalon is planned to have 132 for sale units–mostly townhomes–and 250 rental units, all of which would be above the retail. Planning …
Thursday, April 5, 2012
North American Properties seeks a positive recommendation for its request to amend the former Prospect Park property's master plan.
The Alpharetta Planning Commission has a full agenda for today, April 5, starting with the master plan amendment request by Avalon. The Planning Commission tabled the Avalon request after its March public hearing and held a work session on the application on March 26, tabling it again at the end of the discussion. It must be brought back to the table by a vote before any recommendation can be made to City Council. Issues the commission thought were most important were: Other agenda items include:
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Alpharetta Planning Commissioners don't want to set a precedent by approving for rent units on the property along Old Milton Parkway, but want to find a way to OK the project.
Alpharetta Planning Commissioners may want to move the Avalon project forward, but they don't want to open the doors to other projects getting apartments approved. The recommending board held a special workshop meeting Monday, March 26 to discuss the project. It had held a public hearing on March 1, but the members tabled it to give themselves more time to study the proposal. In its master plan amendment request, North American Properties asked for 382 residential units, much less than the 782 condos Thomas Enterprises got approved for Prospect Park in the master plan. But Avalon includes 250 rental units in its plans. The Planning Commissioners spent almost two hours discussing problems they had with the developer's application, including…
Monday, March 26, 2012
Avalon's developers say 'don't call them apartments,' but that's exactly what the rental housing in the mixed-use proposal is considered by the city.
Alpharetta's Planning Commission has scheduled a work session tonight, March 26, for the sole purpose of discussing the Avalon development proposal. The meeting will be held at Alpharetta City Hall immediately after a short City Council public hearing. The commission had tabled North American Properties' application for a master plan amendment during its March 1 meeting. Planning Commissioner Francis Kung'u made the motion, saying there was too much information to digest at the time. His motion included a proposal for two Planning Commission workshops before the April 5 meeting, though this was the only one scheduled. He said they particularly needed to consider the following: The city already exceeds the ratio of apartments its policy …
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Alpharetta City Council awarded a $1.65 million bid to finish the roadway, with most of the funds coming from the GA Department of Transportation.
Sometime in June–or maybe even in late April, if the weather and utilitt companies cooperate–motorists will be able to drive between Windward Parkway and Mansell Road on Westside Parkway without a detour. Alpharetta approved a $1.65 million bid to complete the final section between Webb Bridge Road and Old Milton Parkway. Once the contract is accepted and signed by the winning bidder, CW Matthews, "in 30 days we will have the road open for traffic," said Pete Sewczwicz, director of Engineering and Public Works, in his presentation to City Council at Alpharetta City Hall Monday night, March 19. City Council members were hoping for as early as late April for an opening. The work could begin as soon as the end of this week, but utility …
Friday, March 2, 2012
North American Properties' general manager says this delay puts the October 2013 opening in jeopardy.
After more than three hours of a public hearing on Avalon, the development seeking to fill the empty space left when Prospect Park tanked, the Alpharetta Planning Commission put off making any decision for at least a month. Mark Toro of North American Properties said, "I'm terribly disappointed that they chose to table it because... we're not going to be able to tell them anything 30 days from now that we couldn't tell them tonight. "What it means is it crunches our schedule to start and to open in October of 2013," he said. Planning Commissioner Francis Kung'u made the motion to table the decision, saying there was too much information to digest at the time. His motion included a proposal for two Planning Commission workshops before the …
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
The community members at the public information meeting quizzed the property owner's representative about parking, building timeline.
Alpharetta residents got their first chance to hear what North American Properties plans for Avalon, its 80-acre property at Old Milton Parkway and GA 400, and the 70-80 people at Alpharetta City Hall mostly seemed impressed with the presentation. On Monday night residents had a chance to ask questions. Starting with an Alpharetta Planning Commissiong meeting on March 1, they will have the chance to say what they think about the project on the record. Mark Toro of North American Properties told city residents his company plans a less intense development than what Thomas Enterprises proposed for Prospect Park on the same property. Avalon will have single family residential in a 13-acre section of the property, with 118 townhomes and 14 …