Phenix City City Council to determine fate of 11-acre property in February

Published: Jan. 4, 2022 at 2:51 PM EST
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - The fate of an 11-acre piece of property in Phenix City could potentially end up in court. An attempt to rezone the land from low-density residential to high-density residential is on the table.

Essentially, an apartment complex or something similar would be the outcome for the land if it passes.

Coming up the day after Valentine’s Day, the future of this property will be determined by the Phenix City City Council. There are differing opinions and on the 15th of February, someone is not going to love the outcome.

The process for rezoning property in Phenix City starts with the planning commission - they hear the request and make a recommendation to city leadership. The hearing for the 11 acres owned by GGG Partners, LLC was back in October 2021.

But a problem arose from the planning commission’s actions - or lack thereof.

“There was no motion made by the planning commission on the rezone, therefore planning commission is not submitting a recommendation to city council.”

That’s City Clerk Melony Lee reading a memo from the planning commission to city leaders.

Mayor Eddie Lowe in discussion on the topic adds, “The Planning Commission failed to do their duties...”

Councilman Steve Bailey has a unique position in all of this - he represents District 1 where the property is located - he’s also got planning commission experience as he previously served in that role.

WTVM’s Ben Stanfield asked Bailey if he agreed with the mayor’s statement about the commission’s failure...

“Basically I do. I was on the planning commission a year and a half ago for four years,” said Bailey. “I don’t remember that coming up before us in the past that we didn’t make a recommendation one way or the other. With that being said, being a past member of the commission, I’d have to agree with that.”

Any non-action by the planning commission essentially becomes a “yes” after 60 days - and that’s where things stand now. Still, the Phenix City City Council must approve at the February 15th meeting. The public will also have an opportunity to state their feelings on the project that morning.

The council is expecting a large turnout. A decision - either way - can be challenged in court.

GGG Partners did not turn up on an internet search, but we’ll continue to try to reach out to the group.

The property is just down the street from Lakewood Golf Course.

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