The possibility does exist, however, Commissioners could decide to go their own way and approve the application. And if they do choose to do so, the Community Development Department has provided the Commission with 16 conditions. (Also found in the Agenda Packet)
The development, proposed by Terwilliger Pappas Multi-Family, LLC., would require four parcels be rezoned from a mixture of O-I and R-75 to PC-2 to allow for the construction of 121 Residential Units, 3,600 Square Feet of Live-Work Units, and 9,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space. The specific land parcels are 1411, 1417, 1423, & 1427 Dresden Dr.
The “upscale” residential component of the project is proposed as 113 apartment units and 8 townhomes. Terwilliger Pappas says these units will have gourmet style kitchens, high-end finishes throughout and will attract a demographic who can afford a rental rate starting around $2,300 per month, ranging up to $4,000 per month. A three level parking deck with 314 parking spaces is also proposed with 5 on-street parking spaces along Dresden Drive and a restricted right-in/left-out driveway on Appalachee Drive.
According to the City, the site has approximately 320 feet of frontage along Dresden Drive and 300 feet of frontage along Appalachee Drive. The PC-2 zoning district allows a density up to 60 units per acre. The proposed density for the development would be 59.57 units per acre.
Opinions from the community and the developer differ as to whether the project is in compliance with the Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay. According to Staff, the zoning proposal does not appear to conform with the intent of the City’s Comprehensive Plan, and the proposed land use would not be compatible with the existing character of the area.
A City Arborist report says the submitted tree preservation and replacement plan for the proposed development does not comply with the City’s tree ordinance regulations to preserve 120 inches of trees as mandated by the Tree Ordinance. “The required number of specimen trees to be saved for the proposed development is 243.6” of trees, as mandated by the Tree Ordinance, however the applicant proposes to donate 108.75 inches to the tree fund at $200 per inch for a total recompense of $21,750,” the Report says. “The applicant should plant trees on site and nearby locations first, then remaining inches can be paid to the tree fund.”
The DeKalb County School District indicates that Solis Dresden would add 6 students to the already over-capacity Ashford Park Elementary School, three students to Chamblee Middle School and four students to Chamblee High School.
A Traffic Study preformed by A&R Engineering that was stamped received by the City Community Development Department on June 2nd, evaluated the added traffic the proposed Solis Dresden project would bring. The study counted cars, trucks and buses during both peak AM and PM (7AM-9AM and 4PM-6PM) travel times and provides counts of the area as it exists today and contemplates “post-construction” counts.
According to the table below, the completed Solis Dresden development would generate another 1,545 at best and 2,167 at worst trips in the area. The chart shows actual trip generation numbers and reduced trip generation numbers, as it is expected some of the trip counts will be lowered because of transit use or reductions because of the nature of a mixed-use development.
The A&R Engineering study also provides data for the proposed Dresden Village, another mixed-use development across the street on Dresden Dr. The table below shows that development will generate 3,758 at worst and 2,662 at best. The same actual and reduced trip count methodologies were also incorporated in the chart below.
Residents in the surrounding community have consistently said they would like to see condo’s instead of apartments, something the developer says is just not economically feasible given the high cost of the land. According to attorney for the applicant, Woody Galloway, Terwilliger Pappas has not yet purchased the parcels, a purchase contingent on the project proceeding.
Terwilliger Pappas has hosted a number community meetings to gather feedback from the community, which was the point of their asking for a deferral from going before the City in June to July. At each one of the meetings, residents in attendance said they appreciated Terwilliger’s willingness to listen and make tweaks to their proposal, but the changes have not been significant enough to gather widespread community support.
Last week, a group of residents from Brookhaven Fields, Ashford Park and surrounding neighborhoods distributed a petition asking City Leaders to put its residents first, hear their voice and exercise Smart Development in the Dresden Corridor.
“We the undersigned are residents of Brookhaven and want to be sure that our voice is heard regarding redevelopment along Dresden,” the petition says. “We request that this petition be added to the City Public Record. We agree to the following and it is our desire that the City of Brookhaven hear our voice and act first and foremost for the protection of the public health, safety, morality, and welfare of its residents.”
The petitioners say they are not against development, but want smart, creative, and thoughtful development that is in keeping with the character of their neighborhoods and greater community. But with another 1,000 apartments being proposed for the area collectively, which residents say amounts to a 56% increase in apartment units and a potential total population density increase of 10-20%, a line has to be drawn in the sand somewhere.
Planning Commissioners are scheduled to consider the Solis Dresden development at 7:00 PM on July 6th at Brookhaven City Hall located at 4362 Peachtree Rd.
Residents are encouraged to attend.