City council met Thursday night to discuss possible rezoning along Wilkinson Pike and Greshampark Drive.
The proposed area would switch from Residential to Mixed Use and require removal of the buffer zone on those properties. Several residents in the area came to the meeting to voice their concerns with the zoning. NewsRadioWGNS' Jackson Jones has more...
We spoke with Superintendent of Stones River National Battlefield Brenda Waters...
Others raised concerns with traffic, preserving the battlefield, invasion of privacy with three story buildings which would look down on homes, covenants not being enforceable by council, keeping the area residential and general office, losing green areas, and more.
Tommy Smith, who is developing the area near the battlefield, spoke to council and the residents. "Basically, if the buffer just sits there it will be a piece of dirt with no vegetation," said Smith.
He requested for the entire 100-foot buffer to be removed. Developers said it makes the property a dead zone. They said they would potentially use the buffer area as a parking lot.
Council has the choice of approving the entire request, only partially, or denying it completey.
Councilwoman Madelyn Scales Harris proposed a compromise for the buffer. Councilman Rick Lalance said they could remove the buffer on the west side and keep the General Office (OG). "This is going to be difficult," said Lalance.
Councilman Eddie Smotherman said the land in that area is flat and you always see sites such as Embassy Suites and more. He said the buffer protects the view point both ways. "You're not only blocking the view of people in their homes, but also vice versa," said Smotherman.
Councilwoman Madelyn Scales Harris made a motion to defer until next meeting. "I don't feel comfortable doing this right now," said Scales Harris.
Council moved forward with deferment and will meet again soon to discuss the rezoning.
In other council news, City Council honored Retiring Golf Director Tracy Wilkins with a proclamation. Wilkins said, "I'm not going anywhere though, I'll continue to work with the kids on the golf course."