BUFORD - Buford grows a little larger almost every month through annexations. Monday, Buford gave up a little bit of land when city commissioners voted to give Terry Cohron a quitclaim deed for .07 acres of Garner Street.
The city plat shows West Garner Street crossing Little Mill Road, running between two private lots, then crossing Bell Street. But that slim stretch from Little Mill Road to Bell Street was fenced in by Grover Garrett, the former property owner, in the 1950s. Behind the chain link fence, the would-be road is covered in grass and looks like a backyard.
A nearby homeowner said the city shouldn't be so quick to give up a stretch of road that might be useful.
"Since you've closed that railroad crossing, we have no other road (except Garner) running parallel to Main Street on that side of the railroad tracks," JoAnn Ehlert said. "If there was an emergency and something happened on Shadburn Avenue, we would have no way to get out."
Commission Chairman Phillip Beard argued that the road had been fenced in as part of the home's backyard for decades.
"You have a valid concern," Beard told Ehlert. "Let's hope nothing happens."
How could a property owner fence in a city street and make it part of his yard?
"Mr. Garrett built the house in 1950 and lived in it," said Cohron, who purchased the property about a month ago. "Back then, they were not streets as much as they were alleys and they are all over town. They're no use to anybody. The high school used to be back there, and kids walked to school, and I guess Mr. Garrett put up the fence to keep kids from walking through his yard."
City annexes 4.5 acres
Buford annexed 4.5 acres of residential land on Buford Dam Road, but tabled Glenn Hamilton's request for commercial rezoning. Hamilton plans to open a boat storage facility on the property. The acreage is boarded on both sides by land zoned commercial. Buford's planning and zoning board recommended approval of the annexation and rezoning, and no one spoke against the project.
Buford gains a church
Keey Ministries, a nondenominational church, will open its doors in about two weeks at 4582 Atwater Court, Suite 8. The five-member church will hold services in the Brickton Business Park off Nelson Brogdon Boulevard. Buford's planning and zoning board recommended approval of the special use permit.