Planning & Zoning Staff
Dutchtown Activity Center
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The Comprehensive Plan designates the Dutchtown area as an Activity Center eligible for a master planning process, which involved giving the land and property owners in the area the opportunity to vote on whether they wanted to proceed with developing a master plan.
According to the process as defined in the ULDC, both 51% of the land area owners and 51% of the property owners within the designated area must vote yes in order to begin the master planning process without having a Zoning Advisory Board Hearing. Of the 272 parcels in the Dutchtown area, only 67 property owners – or 24% – even cast a vote, with 40 voting “yes” and 27 voting “no”. Because the required 51% was not achieved, the next step regarding the proposed Dutchtown Activity Center is for it to go before the Zoning Advisory Board for a series of hearings. The first of these hearings will be held on August 12, 2010, at 7:30 p.m. in the Community Meeting Room of the Henry County Administration Building at 140 Henry Parkway McDonough, GA 30253. Staff will provide a short presentation, and public comment will be heard. A work session will be held in Conference Room B of the Administration Building at 6:30 p.m. The public is invited to attend; however, public comment will not be heard at the work session. The August 12 ZAB hearing will be held for informational purposes only where staff will present the Dutchtown Activity Center and provide details to the ZAB regarding the outcome of the vote and feedback from citizens at the town hall meetings held earlier this summer.
What is an “Activity Center”?
- Activity Centers are included on Henry County’s Future Land Use Map within the Comprehensive Plan to be master planned at a later date.
- Master planning means determining where various types of new development can go, including streets, private property, and open space.
- The “master plan” will be enforced by a change in the law called an “overlay district.”
- The “overlay district” will also determine what new construction will look like.
What is a “School Node?”
- A “school node” has been determined to be a particular type of activity center centered around certain schools in Henry County.
- The activity center planned for the Dutchtown area is centered around the Dutchtown school complex and therefore is a “school node.” For an example, please view this PDF.
It is not just the Dutchtown schools.
- The plan assumes that clustering “new development” around schools will modify people’s driving behavior.
- The assumption is that if new residents live close to their child’s school, they will not have to drive so much.
There are many Henry County schools planned to have activity centers, encouraging “new development” around them.