SNELLVILLE -- The Snellville City Council adopted Monday an "urban redevelopment plan," an undertaking meant to begin the process of helping rejuvenate four struggling sectors of the city.
The council voted unanimously at Monday's meeting to approve the plan created by the city's Urban Redevelopment Agency. Acting under Georgia's Urban Redevelopment Act, the plan will seek to get state funding and incentives to "rehabilitate, conserve or redevelop" certain areas of Snellville.
A total of four areas of the city were identified in the study as having a "critical need for intervention:"
• The Towne Center at Snellville area, which includes the City Hall and police department areas, as well as the intersection of U.S. Highway 78 and Ga. Highway 124: "Many of the properties are older and need updating to stay current."
• The Eastside Medical Center area: "The hospital's ongoing expansion plans lead growth in this largely retail and professional service area. As the surrounding retail area ages there will be critical opportunities to redevelop portions of this redevelopment area."
• The "Highway 78 west-side area," which is comprised mainly of retail and commercial uses along the U.S. Highway 78 corridor: "There are numerous curb cuts on U.S. 78 and most businesses lack inter-parcel access. Some commercial structures along the corridor are declining or vacant."
• The Lenora Church Road area, which includes the area around and south of Briscoe Park (and does not, thanks to a motion from Councilman Bobby Howard, include the No Business Creek area): The area will "provide an opportunity for the city to improve the quality of life factors and an opportunity to encourage redevelopment of declining neighborhoods," the plan says.
The full study can be found on the city's website at www.snellville.org.
The sole member of the public that spoke up during a public hearing on the issue Monday advised against the action, specifically targeting the section of the Urban Redevelopment Act necessitating cities to deem areas up for redevelopment as "slums."
The resident feared such a designation would hurt the image of the four areas included in the plan.