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109 Comments

  1. 1

    Thomas Porter

    I am disappointed in the Planning Commission’s decision.
    I am truly angry at Community Development.
    I hold some hope for City Council.
    I am so proud of the citizens who gave a GREAT presentation.

  2. 2

    Thomas Porter

    I’d rather the City spend hundreds of thousands defending developer lawsuits than submit to sleazy threats.

  3. 3

    Josh

    They are counting a 4′ wide mulched “path” in between 3 story high town homes that opens onto a fire lane to meet their supposed open space requirement. This is total BS in so many ways.

  4. 4

    Tom Reilly

    No argument there, Tom!! Precedent is a very powerful zoning tool. Once you get a reputation for giving in to threats, word gets out, and suddenly you have a lot more threats. Set a precedent for standing up when it counts, and the threats diminish.

  5. 5

    Emily

    Where did THAT plan come from? It wasn’t in the packet on the city website.

  6. 6

    Bite Me

    It appeared tonight at the meeting for the first time. Can you tell who the city is looking out for? It’s not the citizens obviously.

  7. 7

    This is just the start

    Follow the money and political favors. This was planned behind the scenes, backroom deals are not exclusive to JMax and Becky. Marie may be gone but that backroom is getting used just as much as before. Connolly will be approved because it is a piece in the puzzle, TP was a smoke and mirror denial. The 30 units per acre cap is a distraction to get Connolly and Marta passed but as the article says, a variance is all it takes to approve 12O units per acre. We are just pawns in a political career in the works and now Dresden has PC2 zoning, don’t think it will stop there.

  8. 8

    John

    The fix is in. Bye bye Brookhaven Fields and the less desirable parts of Ashford Park. Might as well sell now. The NEW CITY CENTER IS COMING! Peachtree to Clairmont to Buford Highway. $$$$$$$ Might as well delete those new Character Area results you participated in and voiced your opinions on. They are never going to be heard. On to MARTA.

  9. 9

    Saul

    True to form, the D1 Angel recognised a revenue generator at the expense of the affected neighborhood. But the D1 Angel, he would never let something of this magnitude soil our precious, beloved D1. Everyone understand now?

  10. 10

    Hunter Burke

    Unfortunately, yes. This is on the backs of the City Council now, and we will vote this year on how you respond for half of you. Another of you will be gone anyway, leaving Linley Jones and Ernst the only safe ones for now.
    The public’s collective memory is long and many will remind the few who forget.

  11. 11

    Ellen

    Blah blah blah

  12. 12

    blind faith

    Thank you to the TWO Planning Commissioners who had the guts and determination to say NO. To those who caved….you are a huge disappointment. Proper “Land Use” has to serve the community, not the wallet of the developers.

  13. 13

    Bob Sorrentino

    Thanks everyone for the support so far. To some degree I feel bad for the Planning Commissioners. They had an 11th hour legal attack that could have easily confused anyone with only a couple of hours to respond. The good news is that argument has severe flaws in its foundation. And the Council will have plenty of time to digest it and not make a decision based in confusion and threat.

  14. 14

    blind faith

    Below are the “Goals” of Brookhaven’s elected officials (Mayor and City Council). These are posted on the Brookhavenga.gov website. Interesting read. Perhaps the mayor and council members should read it [themselves] to remind them of their own vision. They WERE all about parks, greenspace and preserving the quality of life in Brookhaven – except Gebbia’s goals – he wasn’t looking past his nose. This would almost be funny if it weren’t so very, very sad.

    Mayor Ernst’s goals are to get back to the basics by delivering better parks, more greenspace and a transparent government

    Councilperson Jones’ goals:
    Provide ethical and dedicated representation
    Improve Brookhaven’s parks and expand greenspace
    Increase walkability
    Protect the neighborhoods and quality of life in District 1

    Park’s Goals:
    Maintain and improve the livability of our neighborhoods.
    Integrate Brookhaven into a regional network of paths and greenways
    Acquire more parks and greenspace in Brookhaven
    Foster more public private partnerships to achieve the goals of Brookhaven

    Mattison’s goals:
    increase walkability and transportation alternatives
    attract smart economic development
    grow jobs
    create better quality of life

    Gebbia’s goals:
    Act as a true representative of the people that live in District 4
    Identify a permanent location for Brookhaven City Hall
    Launch a police department
    Identify possible locations for a park in District 4

  15. 15

    Bob Sorrentino

    And I hope people can forgive one sarcastic comment on my part after last nights disappointment… According to developer his five story building is actually lower than my 2 story house. As my house tops 1,030 ft above sea level and this development is only at 989 ft. At least that is the argument he used to show that this 5 story structure is shorter than the the 4/3 story kaleidoscope structure. It was disappointing to see that argument actually land.

  16. 16

    Saul

    Hunter, is he moving? Or have the people of that city district finally come to there senses? Who have they selected to run against him?

  17. 17

    Easy Rider

    Sorry Bob, as a less than fully informed observer I was somewhat swayed by the argument regarding comparative height. Without sarcasm, can anyone explain the height difference of the Connolly development compared to the corner of Village Place at Kaleidoscope?

  18. 18

    Dean

    As for Gebbia, you forgot his goal of a monorail line that would interconnect with Chamblee and Dunwoody taking a lot of traffic off of our roads. Having a monorail in Brookhaven would allow us to enjoy our growing skyline!

  19. 19

    elevation man

    Dresden Village average site elevation pre construction 930′ plus structure height.

    Casa Sorrentino existing lot elevation 920′ (at structure), plus structure height.

  20. 20

    Barbara

    Time for ALL new council and City Manager. This is beyond wrong.

  21. 21

    Kerry

    What a travesty – such a betrayal of public trust. The Planning Commission rolled on to its back tonight. They say we are helpless to determine our future and must be governed by mistakes of the past. Wringing their hands over Webster’s definition of ‘contiguous’ they ignored the biggest issue that Dresden Drive is not designed for high density.

  22. 22

    Bob Sorrentino

    Easy Rider. As you travel east along Dresden, the Dresden Village starts off a base elevation at the street at 920ft above sea level. The development here is 989 ft above Sea level. So the structure is 69ft above the street at the farthest west point. Then as you travel to the eastern most point of the structure the road rises to about 925 ft. The structure is also 989 ft here, thus a 64ft difference between the street there. Remember this structure is 400ft long. No structure at the MARTA TOD is near as long as that. “Permeability”

    Now when you get to Kaleidoscope. The street is at 934ft above sea level. The tallest point on that structure is 999 ft. So 999 ft is taller than 989, but that is not the most honest way of looking at it. So Village Place is 65 ft here. But Dresden Village travels up the hill as we keep heading east, and the structure drops off from that 999 elevation very quickly as it goes to three stories almost immediately. By the time you get to Verde, the road elevation is all the way up to 944 ft above sea level and the structure is well below 999ft. It is probably in the 45ft range here but do not have any data to back that up.

    So Village Place is actually a much shorter structure and it only spans 300 ft before becoming permeable.

  23. 23

    Easy Rider

    Thank you for the explanation.

  24. 24

    Barbara

    By allowAing the sea level argument isn’t the city justifiably saying it’s ok to remove 30 ft of dirt and build and extra 3 stories in the future? Sea level and street level should be inconsequential to the ordinances that are previously set.

  25. 25

    Frank S

    How many devices can one man have? It appears that TP wins the award for having the most! SMH

  26. 26

    bldvl89

    They didn’t wring their hands over Webster’s definition of “contiguous;” the City Attorney just didn’t like it, so he went to the Black’s Law dictionary definition of “contiguous” instead, which defines it as “being in close proximity; neighboring; adjoining, in actual close contact; touching at a point or along a boundary.” The Black’s law definition ends by saying it is NOT synonymous with “vicinal,” followed by case cites.

    “Vicinal,” ironically, is not defined in Black’s. But Webster’s defines it as “local” or “of or relating to a limited district,” suggesting “vicinal” is synonymous with “proximity.” Of course, “vicinal” is not the word used in the 27-1383(g)(6), i.e., “developments are permitted to add one additional story to each building on a given parcel if [vicinal], publicly accessible open space as defined by this district in subsection (e), not including on-street parking and public sidewalks along roadways, comprising at least 25 percent of the development parcel is provided.”

    I couldn’t believe it when the PC made a motion for the CDD to actually clarify what the word “contiguous” in the phase “a contiguous, publicly accessible, open space” means. WTF????

    If 27-1383(g)(6)(b) intended for height bonuses to be granted for multiple separate parcels of open space in an assemblage, the ordinance would not have the words “a” and “contiguous” next to each other (or even had those words in the code section to begin with), and it would have used the plural of the word “space” in the rest of the sentence (not the singular, as in one space) to sanctify aggregating several separate spaces to reach the necessary 25% justifying a height bonus as Connolly did.

    The fact that the City Attorney had to disingenuously twist and bend the definition of the word “contiguous” so much (first by disregarding the plain Webster’s meaning of the word, then lifting ONLY the “being in close proximity” definition from Black’s), and that the PC felt compelled to engage in the ridiculous machination of having the CDD re-define the plain meaning of the singular phrase “a contiguous, publicly accessible open space,” suggests to me that last night’s outcome was dictated to the City Attorney ahead of time.

    I lost a lot of respect for the four members of the PC that voted to approve this – Ms. Cameron, Mr. Funny, Mr. Segal and Mr. Sen – and especially for Mr. Balch last night. They disrespected the plain language of the zoning ordinance, my neighborhood, our homes, our time, and our energy, while jerking those of us who have been advocating for smart growth along Dresden for the past year, all in one fell swoop. For what?

    Happy New Year. It’s going to be long one already.

  27. 27

    Susan

    Ahhhh. Welcome to Brookhaven. The new Brookhaven we all didn’t bargain for.

  28. 28

    Abe Froman

    Millennials… SMH

  29. 29

    bldvl89

    I second – Mr. Levy and Mr. Francour are the only two who actually saw past the shenanigans being played with the 27-1383(g)(6) language awarding extra building height for “a contiguous, publicly accessible, open space,” who appear to grasp the design of the Overlay as seen through the Comprehensive Plan and the unadulterated version of the City zoning ordinance, and who have attempted to balance these re-zoning requests (T-P, Connolly and MARTA) with their impact to the surrounding community.

  30. 30

    Curious

    I just watched last nights video. What was the third degree about with the parking deck being a pay to park? In the ended they took the guys word for it that he would do what ever anyway? Can’t find that in the code I’m guessing.. I was told today that the mayor asked for the parking and is in on the restaurant debacle. Communities expense to solve city screw ups? Anyone want to share what that is all about?

  31. 31

    This is just the start

    You are getting close…add in the city’s desire to have Green Meadows connect to Elijay – 0nly one parcel in the way now. Parking, reduce lights on Dresden, …. this was a deal done in the backroom, residents be damned.

  32. 32

    Russ

    Excluding the townhomes, the code requires 291 parking spaces. The proposed parking garage has 420 spaces. 129 more than required. This should make certain local restaurant owners who happen to be high powered attorneys who have been leaning on the city very hard for additional parking happy. The cost of this additional parking would be around $2,000,000 to construct. That requires a lot of apartments to be added to cover the additional cost.

  33. 33

    Susan

    That Caldwell-Ellijay intersection isn’t the real problem. It’s the volume of traffic on Dresden, limited sight distance at drives in that area due to close to intersection on street parking and speeding through a congested area. Then there is the cluster at Dresden and Peachtree. Typical government, ignore the obvious for the invented feel good.

  34. 34

    Frustrating and unfair

    The city needs to stop the abuse of the neighbors who have been trying to work on this for the benefit of all of us. These neighbors seem to know the code better than anyone but, every time they point something out as a reason to deny, the information gets shared with the builder and a quick change/correction/manipulation is designed to try and cure it at even more detriment to the area. That’s what feels like happened again just before the meeting. Letters to deny were sent to the city to support a denial but instead were used against us for the builder.

  35. 35

    Susan

    Welcome to Brookhaven.

  36. 36

    Jennifer

    I’ve been too disappointed to respond or even read a thing until today. It sucks, it really does. It makes it that much harder for us to help the city Council understand the true and very negative implications this will have in Southern Brookhaven’s future. If the Mayor and Council follow suit they are setting us up to have the developments in litigation come back to haunt us with a vengeance.

    We worked hard, we gave up our personal time and money for over a year, we followed the process and we got screwed by those put in position by those we elected (or failed to run against). I guess that means it is on us, after all we voted or didn’t.

    My take away from this is that it doesn’t matter what the residents say or want – take for exAmple the character area studies and polls and petitions, not to mention the presentations at meetings and heartfelt comments of so many of us vs the handful of developers and speculating landowners – who did they listen to? Why, is it the team of layers the developers have on staff? Do the residents need to hire a team of lawyers to be heard? I would think in a city of 50K that is doable based on the percentages we see in opposition. I’m not recommending that but I am asking what does it take for the MAJORITY of regular tax paying, voting citizens of Brookhavento be heard?

    We have done all that we were told to do for over a year. We have worked hard and today I feel like we’re are no better of than we were a year ago, the PC votes to approve PC2 on Dresden, Marta is in front of the Council in less than two weeks for their development, the overlay character study has been delayed until after the moratorium expires, the “Architectural Review Board” will be made up of the same suspects that brought us the overlay and the zoning re-write committee is listed on the city site as the following developers and other “professionals” who benefit drone the urbanization of southern Brookhaven.

    Zoning Ordinance Rewrite Steering Committee Steering Committee

    Stan Segal, Planning Commission Chair
    Jeff O’Connell, Zoning Board of Appeals
    Jack Honderd, Resident/Builder
    Richard Lauth, Attorney
    Alan Cablik, Builder/Developer
    Kevin Quirk, Attorney
    Alex Michaud, Resident
    Tim Nama, Builder/Developer
    Mike Busher, Builder/Developer
    Donnie Reed, Real Estate
    Keith Linch, Attorney

    Anyone know some good lawyers or realtors? you might want to give them a call -it may be the last chance to save the neighborhoods or get a high price for your home. Once construction starts and the nightmare begins property values will fall so I am told by some local realtors and friend that have tried to sell after construction sets in.

  37. 37

    Susan

    “My take away from this is that it doesn’t matter what the residents say or want – take for example the character area studies and polls and petitions, not to mention the presentations at meetings and heartfelt comments of so many of us vs the handful of developers and speculating landowners – who did they listen to?”

    Evidently not the affected citizens.

    Welcome to the Brookhaven way of doing business. They spin your wheels until you just give up in frustration.

  38. 38

    On the Record

    Thanks to citizen involvement and the city, townhomes on Caldwell next to Alden Place were denied, increased density for new homes was denied on Clearview near Gail drive, townhomes on Ashford Dunwoody near Blackburn were denied, Hastings property on Peachtree was denied, apartments on Dresden at Appalachee was denied.

    Everything many not be perfect, but it’s over reaching to suggest that the citizens don’t have a positive impact.

  39. 39

    Sandy

    @OtR – Not even comparable to the MARTA project and the Dresden Corridor as a whole. If that was the case then I would ask, “Why is the citizen voice and impact so selective when it comes to the powers that be?

  40. 40

    Barry Miller, Sr.

    Totally agree. The project was made much better with citizen involvement. Most of the nay sayers say they are ok with development publicly then lobby to kill it behind the scenes. Dishonesty has been at an all time high on this project. Say what you will, the developer gave up much they did not have to. Great project. I hope it passes!

    Connolly did not have to put in the ownership townhomes, they did not have to have 60 meetings with the community and they did not have to reduce the density to where they have. The community is being unreasonable at this point and I am embarrassed my neighbors are acting this way.

    Please go ahead with your down votes and negative comments.

  41. 41

    Jennifer

    From the start ownership, height and density were the issues the community have had. 3O units per acre max, height alignment with the existing and ownership units. The design presented was even more dense and higher than we started with. They have voted for approval of PC2 on Dresden – for those that don’t get it… that means we have a precedent for up to 120 units per acre, 8 – 10 stories for any new applicants to use as justification – just as JR used Alta/Rosewood.

  42. 42

    On the Record

    Sometimes elected officials, appointed officials, and city staff draw different conclusions than the citizen voice. But they mostly seem to listen. Although the MARTA project and this project didn’t conclude as you would like, they were both significantly modified because of the citizen’s voice. I can understand raw feelings at this time, but the citizens input was both heard and had a very positive impact.

  43. 43

    Bob Sorrentino

    Barry, most of the people I have been working about have been very consistent about what they would like to see here. And they have always said that if the developer could do X, then we would do back flips over the project. The 30 unit/acre number is very reasonable. I believe the PC past an ordinance enforcing that number the very same night they approved this. So if the PC agrees that sub area II of the overlay should be capped at 30, then how are we unreasonable for pushing for this same number.

    The only additional complaint that we added was an objection to the 5th story when it was added. The code says they must provide a contiguous open space that is 25% of the site to community for that 5th story. They are not. Are you okay with this lowering of the bar? (Not attacking you, honest questions).

    They reduced the apartment count by 25 units from over the summer. And added 10 townhomes. If you think those 10 townhomes may provide around 2.5x the value of a 1bd apartment for the developer, then what great sacrificed have they offered? Don’t get me wrong. The townhome addition was great as was aligning Green Meadows. But I personally have big issues watering down the contiguous requirement of the open space bonus. As that will absolutely guarantee that no large meaningful open space will ever be provided in Brookhaven.

  44. 44

    FUD

    All just FUD. Please don’t run from the truth. You yourself said 50 units per acre was acceptable during the April meeting with the developer. At that time they were asking for 60, community was saying they were OK with 45. You said to meet in the middle with 50, they did even better than that, then when they actually came back with a new plan the naysayers changed their mind and lowered their acceptable number. That is devious and you all have not been honest with the people you are asking to support you. Then you all did that petition and changed the numbers after it started. Whats up with that? I’m not trying to be combative, but y’all are not being honest. Get over it. You live in urban place, you get density.

  45. 45

    Just Curious

    @BobSorrentino – You have another ‘at bat’ at the end of the month. Why not lobby your council person to modify the ordinance to clarify the definition of contiguous so this doesn’t happen on the next zoning case. Changing the ordinance for PC2 density seemed easy enough why not this change for clarity. Do the mayor and your councilman support this?

  46. 46

    Sandy

    @FUD – You are just making up crap now. You know it and we know it. Obvious plant for the developer.

  47. 47

    Sandy

    You got the dishonesty part right but it wasn’t from the citizens. Your embarrassment is misplaced. Nice try at picking and choosing what you have been told or heard instead of being involved and participating.

  48. 48

    Jennifer

    In that specific conversation we had come to an impass as you well know since you were there and pushing for the 60 and then some. I suggested there should be some out of the box thinking and try to come to a compromise, that was an example. I also told all of you that I DO NOT speak for the community, I would take the information and push it out in my channels but the community (I did by posting the developers information verbatim). I also said the community would need to speak for themselves – they did and said 30 units per acre. Tell the whole story.

    So FUD I’m not sure if you are Jim Eyer or part of the development team hiding behind “FUD” surely you are brave enough to use your real name.

  49. 49

    On the Record #2

    There is no Barry Miller, Sr. listed anywhere that lives within Brookhaven. Connolly didn’t have to have 60? meetings but choose to trying to get a different outcome from what he was repeatedly told over and over.

  50. 50

    FUD

    What difference does it make what my name is? Maybe I’m Donald Trump? Maybe I’m OJ Simpson? Who cares. The issue here is you gave the developer a number as the We are Brookhaven leader. You set the number and spoke on our community’s behalf. The developer met and exceeded what the community said they wanted and even gave in to the townhouses. The fact is that you guys don’t really want ANYTHING done there or anywhere else. It is not your world. Other people live in it and they are just as entitled to do what they want within the law as you do. Call me a shill, call me whatever you want I don’t care. I have been reading these damn comments and letters from you people for months. Admit you got what you asked for and blame yourselves if it isn’t good enough. Not me for speaking the truth. In the end you will be there along with your neighbors shopping and buying food and stuff just like you do at Village Place. The hypocrisy! Oh. By the way. I am no developer. I am just a resident just as you who is tired of this crap for I guess different reasons. Good job getting the developer down to 47 and good job for getting the townhomes. Maybe next time you all will ask for what you want to begin with and save us all alot of aggravation.

  51. 51

    Barry Miller, Sr.

    Obfuscating the facts. Can’t any of you people tell the truth! Stop trying to be smart. You’re not good at it! You guys should celebrate your victory! You got the density down almost 15 units per acre! What a great victory. Take a chill pill Einstein!

  52. 52

    Julie M.

    @FUD – The first thing we did was impose a moratorium of the Overlay District in 2013, in the Comp. Plan we asked for a change to the Overlay’s ambiguous language, we asked for the zoning re-write, we asked that the omitted Overlay be included in the Character Area Study, we asked for another moratorium, we asked for a re-write of the Overlay. To all of these asks NOTHING has been completed. Yet, staff has made changes to the code and god only knows how many policies have been created in favor of the developers. As a citizen it is impossible to ever get what has always been requested if our own city won’t give us the proper tools to enforce that vision and instead puts us up against deep pockets and the professional lawyers that represent them. Your truth is based on perception – Our truth is based on facts, hard work, and an ever moving target. We did not get what we have been asking for, since day one, and trying to dilute that to a number is an unjust, uninformed comment on your part.

  53. 53

    Einstein

    Barry,Barry, Barry, that’s what scares you the most. We ARE smart and we see right through the nonsense.

  54. 54

    FUD

    You all kept moving the target and still keep moving it. And every time you get what you ask for you want more and more and more. Unsatisfied, entitled and anointed hypocrites.

  55. 55

    Bob Sorrentino

    Fair question. The answer is simply, the contiguous requirement for the bonus story currently in the code is not broken. I’ve been working with municipalities and regulatory agencies for almost 20 years now. Navigating a code is something I get paid to do. The city is correct in that no code is black and white. But some are a very midnight shade of gray.

    The recent density limit that is working its way toward voting on is a good example of darkening a light shade of gray. But trying to play “let this one pass and will fix it next time” will absolutely exhaust the community in an endless cycle of city meetings. And I can tell you, I’m about worn out helping those neighbors who live next to this proposed development. Also, those plans don’t always work out. The zoning moratorium will come and go without even having a consulting company to help rewrite the Overlay. We have been a city for several years now and still don’t own Brookhaven park. Those are NOT jabs at the city. Just pointing out that things can get complicated and expecting some future change is no safe bet.

    Couple this with the very strong wording of the existing code for the bonus and it is extremely difficult to see how the city could not apply it here. Sure there may be a next time for me (I live on Redding). But there will never be a next time for those that live right next door. They will have the 5 story structure with no trade as promised for a meaningful open space. And to have the city even question the meaning of contiguous frankly reminds me of… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j4XT-l-_3y0

  56. 56

    Teddy Bear

    FUD – It’s hard to hear the truth when it is laid out right in front of you. Easier to resort to lies and name calling. What a gem we have among st us.

  57. 57

    FUD

    I know! I agree with you! PLEASE tell that to these crazy people! Thanks Teddy! The Dresden Village is a gem. I agree!

  58. 58

    Teddy Bear

    LOL! And the spin continues. You are definitely on the Connolly payroll. LOL!

  59. 59

    Barb

    That’s right you are so much more important than your neighbors, how dare we disagree with you. Show us where Jen spoke on behalf of the community and said we wanted 50 units per acre. I’d love to hear what the other people in that meeting heard. I’ve been to the neighborhood meetings, I’ve read the updates and information put out by Jen, I never saw where she even implied that she repressed us with an approval for 50 units per acre. You seem to have a personal issue with Jen who has just tried to give the community an equal footing with people like you.

  60. 60

    Jennifer

    Your right it doesn’t make a difference what your name is. I know who the attendees at the meeting were. Jim Eyer and the developers wanted the 60 unit per acre plan, one HOA President of some townhomes was on the fence, the affected neighbors invited and myself. The developers kept trying to get me to speak for the community and I continued to repeat that was not my role, I was there to give them a seat at the table and transparency in to the process. On a few occasions I said that parts of the plan were better but I would defer my personal feelings to what the closest neighbors thought and give the community the update to decide for themselves. I’m not an HOA, neighborhood assoc or membership group therefore at that time and as of now I do not “represent a group. There seems to be some block in the understanding that I have given the community the information so that they can speak for themselves. Over 800 signatures, hundreds attending meetings over the past year, many small group meetings in neighbors homes, coffee shops, parks, developers offices, university hall, city hall, incubator rooms, meeting rooms in grocery stores, on the street, online meetings and more the COMMUNITY has spoken. All of this on their personal time and expense with the entire community’s interest at the forefront, not paid work with personal gain the only interest like you. So there you have it, the personal attacks on me in social media and via personal email haven’t shut me up and won’t as long as the COMMUNITY wants the information. A few landowners, urban planners, architects and brokers with an agenda for self profit won’t intimidate me, I wear your attracts as a sign of success.

    You can hide behind FUD and the other names you choose to use, we know the truth.

  61. 61

    Jennifer

    That should read.. “I wear your attacks as a sign of success”. Dang auto correct! 🙂

  62. 62

    FUD

    You: “You can hide behind FUD and the other names you choose to use, we know the truth.”

    Reality: The truth is you got what you asked for and your community doesn’t like it so now you are backtracking.

    You: “Over 800 signatures, hundreds attending meetings over the past year, many small group meetings in neighbors homes, coffee shops, parks, developers offices, university hall, city hall, incubator rooms, meeting rooms in grocery stores, on the street, online meetings and more the COMMUNITY has spoken.”

    Reality: Prove the signatures are all from Brookhaven people. Prove there are no duplicate votes. Prove the people signed the petition knowing exactly what they were signing. Prove the content did not change after people started signing the petition.

    You: “All of this on their personal time and expense with the entire community’s interest at the forefront, not paid work with personal gain the only interest like you. So there you have it, the personal attacks on me in social media and via personal email haven’t shut me up and won’t as long as the COMMUNITY wants the information.”

    Reality: You and the community have worked hard and you got what you asked for. A better project with lower density with an ownership component. Nice work. Pretending to be a victim won’t give you a sympathetic advantage. Just be happy you got what you advocated on behalf of your community for. Good work. And don’t you forget, before any of all of this, you and your buds pushed for a city and this is what it is all about. Good work there too. Congrats. Peace on earth.

  63. 63

    Just Curious

    The professional city staff, both planners and legal staff issued an opinion that the application met the criteria. You and the other involved citizens made the case on the other side of the issue. It’s the role of the elected and appointed officials to hear both sides and arbitrate the dispute. Although frustrating, your argument must not have been as convincing.

    If the developer takes off the fifth floor, does the remaining structure result in the 30 units per acre? Do you then support the project, or go on to other issues? Does this get you to the desired result?

  64. 64

    Jennifer

    Planning Commission , Mayor and Council have the information to see that the signatures are not duplicate and verifiable residents who had the entire document to read before signing.

  65. 65

    Jennifer

    Personally – remove the 5th floor and I am fine with it as I told Brian with the development team but that is MY personal opinion. The community can speak for themselves and I strongly suggest that they do planningcommission@brookhavenga.gov and mayorandcouncil@brookhavenga.gov.

    I have also said that my PERSONAL feelings are if the Marta development does not put PC2 on the Fernwood property, keeps the office parking on the Peachtree side, limit to a 4 story plan (I prefer 3 stories for all but the building along Dresden) for the Apple Valley side and stick to the 100ft building on Peachtree (I’d prefer 80ft) and add a Dog area for the residents so we don’t have Fernwood become poopy park. I could live with that.

    Again, personal opinion – the community can express their views at: planningcommission@brookhavenga.gov and mayorandcouncil@brookhavenga.gov.

  66. 66

    FUD

    Now we are getting somewhere. I’ll bet it feels good to get that off of your chest. I share the same vision. But I am ok with the 5th story. Especially since you wold really be able to see it. Good work on getting the project to a win/win. And like it or not, you led the charge to get this done below the density the developer and the community wanted with an ownership component. I’d call that a victory. It’ll be fine.

  67. 67

    Chad

    Bob Sorremtino has done as much or more than any of the many volunteers opposed to ‘very high density projects’ along Dresden. His arguments are so powerful as to have the planning commission debate over the meaning ‘contiguous’. Now I am delivering sewer test failures on NextDoor and personal emails illuminating the ghastly results of the minimalist and late sewer mapping and testing required in a 2010 consent decree. Everyone sees it. All, ALL, of the refined sewer will drain right into what is currently a bag of crap posing as a sewer system. Let’s hope a debate is not started as to the Code meaning of ‘protecting the public welfare’.

    We have been lobbying our City council and mayor for over three years to change the code. In that same time we have lobbied for better parks, better police and better roads. In return we’ve gotten better parks, better roads and better police. Now we have character area input and zoning moratorium in response to our effort from the mayor, neither complete or bearing any changes. We have a loaded zoning code rewrite committee that looks almost exactly the same as the MARTA CRB, BPCA and others that brought us the mistakes. Not once have they asked for the most fundamental engineering changes expected with such power. Now we have them changing the code that would not allow the variances in Dresden Village that was approved by the PC.

    To suggest Bob, or any vocal citizen, has not taken the right path to change is either uninformed, a sarcastic jab or personally insulting. We all hope our City council and Mayor will deny both MARTA rezoning, Dresden Village and anything else that puts more Sewer in our rivers and on our streets and creates gridlock in our neighborhood.

    We are all watching and we all vote.

  68. 68

    John

    Just Curious – The definition of contiguous is clear and Mr. Sorrentino is correct. Jack Honderd agrees and has confirmed this. No modification is needed, UNLESS one is trying harder to make the case for the developer and not the citizens. Enforcement is what is needed. The mayor has supported this development since day one. He doesn’t listen and just wants this done. Clarifying the definition after the fact is a confirmation that the code is clear now, just not as he wants us to read it.

  69. 69

    Sharon

    REPEAT FOR THE 100th TIME – NO MORE APARTMENTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  70. 70

    Remy

    Does the plan the developer has put in front of the city conform to all of the requirements of their application? The answer is yes. So that means by your logic the mayor and council should NOT follow the process and deny it just because you say so?

  71. 71

    Rosemary

    Stop fixating on a single issue. The project as a whole doesn’t work. No village feel, too tall, too dense, PC2 doesn’t belong on Dresden, a one story building is not allowed in the Overlay, they want to pipe a stream, the open space sucks, and we don’t want or need more apartments. Stop it now. Any “fix” needs to happen before any approvals not after.

  72. 72

    John

    It doesn’t matter if it conforms to the requirements of their application, it needs to conform to the requirements of the existing code. It does NOT. Mayor and council should vote no.

  73. 73

    Barry Miller, Sr.

    Since you are apparently a self appointed expert, please entertain all of us how the developer does not comply? Do you really think the city is “cooking the books”? The bottom line is like Remy says it meets the requirements of the code, it conforms to the comprehensive plan, and it is an allowed use. Like it or not its the rules and the processes you voted for when you voted to have a city. Congratulations!

    The city HAS to approve this project or will be sued in court and lose. No judge will ever find in favor of the city if it is denied BECAUSE THEIR OWN RULES HAVE BEEN FOLLOWED! Rules the Brookhaven people help frame with their participation in the comprehensive plan process and when they voted for the city.

    Again, you are just trying to obfuscate the facts. You guys should celebrate your victory! You got the density down almost 15 units per acre! What a great victory! Viva la Naysaysers!

  74. 74

    Rosemary

    Ha! Ha! Baaawhaaa! The city does NOT have to approve. Bring on the threatened lawsuit. If you had actually participated in this you would know the answers you ask. Catch up, Barry.

  75. 75

    Just Curious

    @John, you say it’s clear, but it can’t be clear if the professional and legal staff interpret it differently. It may be clear to you and Mr Sorrentino but if others see it differently than the clarity is questionable. I’m not arguing for or against the conclusions that are being reached just the lack of clarity in the code.

  76. 76

    Facts vs. Lie

    @Barry – There’s that builders math again. Connolly is at 48 units per acre. They actual are ABOVE the staffs previous recommendation at 45 and the 2006 plan at 46.

  77. 77

    FUD

    Huuuuuuuuh? Are you really telling me that with all of your infinite wisdom you haven’t even read the staff reports?

    That is irresponsible.

    The previous 45 unit mark was for 3.43 acres. The new staff report is based on 3.73 acres.

    The extra acreage gives the developer the extra 2.78 units per acre.

    Please do your homework. You’re looking kind of stupid.

    Good lord. And you even got the 2006 numbers wrong!

    The 2006 plan for approved on 3.19 acres at a density of 48.6 units per acre. The 2006 plan called for 155 units.

    The new plan calls for 169 units plus 10 for-sale townhomes on 3.73 acres at a density of 47.98 units per acre.

    Goodness. Get your facts straight and stop trying to scare people with lies. Sheesh!

  78. 78

    Barry Miller, Sr.

    Wow. Your ignorance is unbelievable. They should give away reading glasses and calculators at city hall. Stop relying on what people tell you and find the truth for yourself by examining the record. You are wrong here. But Congratulations.

  79. 79

    Facts vs. Lie

    @FUD and Barry – Catch up boys. Your numbers are wrong. You did finally get the current density right even though the builder keeps quoting 45.
    My numbers are correct as stated. Keep digging, maybe you’ll find your errors. Back at cha, Barry.

  80. 80

    Dave H.

    FUD, What’s irresponsible is you only reading a part of what is available to you and relying on one source of information. Also, the previous marker was 45 or 155 units on 3.43 but the developer refused that number and continued to pursue 57 per acre. Now he wants 48 or 179 units and to him it is 45 per his math. The 2006 plan was and still is 46.
    Your so hostile trying to be right when your not.

  81. 81

    Remy Martin

    So you don’t know the meaning of contiguous either? I hope you don’t hold elected office. We really would be in trouble if you do.

  82. 82

    Barry Miller, Sr.

    Goodness. Just read the staff reports. You are wrong. Here is the proof.

    August 3 Planning Commission Agenda

    Applicant: SSP Dresden, LLC

    Property Location: 1336, 1342, 1350, 1358, 1364, and 1370 Dresden Drive
    2544, 2552, and 2562 Caldwell Road

    District/Land Lot: 18th District, Land Lot 238
    Acreage: 3.44 acres

    Existing Zoning District: O-I (Office – Institution District) Conditional and PC-2 (Pedestrian Community District) Conditional

    Proposed Zoning District: PC-2 (Pedestrian Community District)

    Character Area Map Designation: Peachtree Corridor Overlay District

    Owners: 886 WP, LLC; Dresden Operating, LLC; DeKalb County;
    James M. McKenna; Woodley Daniel Christopher IRA and
    Equity Trust Company for Benefit of Dan Woodley; and
    Brookhaven Property Holdings, LLC

    Owner/Petitioner’s Intent: Rezone from O-I and PC-2 to PC-2 for development of a mixed use building with 194 residential units and 20,000
    square feet of commercial space.

    Community Development Department Recommendation:
    Approval with Conditions to limit density to 45 units per acre

    Condition #2: The subject property shall be limited to a maximum of 155 multifamily dwelling units at a density of 45 dwelling units/acre.

    http://brookhavencityga.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1505&Inline=True
    ________________________________________________________

    January 4th Planning Commission Agenda

    Applicant: SSP Dresden, LLC

    Property Location: 1336, 1342, 1350, 1358, 1364, and 1370 Dresden Drive
    2536, 2544, 2552, and 2562 Caldwell Road

    District/Land Lot: 18th District, Land Lot 238

    Acreage: 3.73 acres

    Existing Zoning District: NS (Neighborhood Shopping), O-I (Office – Institution
    District) Conditional and PC-2 (Pedestrian CommunityDistrict) Conditional

    Proposed Zoning District: PC-2 (Pedestrian Community District)

    Character Area Map Designation: Peachtree Corridor Overlay District

    Owners: 886 WP, LLC; Dresden Operating, LLC; DeKalb County;
    James M. McKenna; Woodley Daniel Christopher IRA and
    Equity Trust Company for Benefit of Dan Woodley; and
    Brookhaven Property Holdings, LLC

    Owner/Petitioner’s Intent: Rezone from NS, O-I, and PC-2 to PC-2 for a mixed-use development with 10 townhome units, 169 multifamily residential units, a 3,300-square-foot leasing office and amenity area, and 20,700 square feet of retail and restaurant uses

    Community Development Department Recommendation:
    Approval with Conditions

    Condition #2: The subject property shall be limited to a maximum of 169 multifamily residential units and 10 single-family attached units at a density of 47.98 dwelling units/acre.

    http://brookhavencityga.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1552&Inline=True

  83. 83

    Facts vs. Lie

    Thanks again, that’s what I said.
    Previous staff recommendation of 45.
    Currently at 48 though builder quotes 45.
    Read the builder letter to mayor and council and see the legal documents for the 2006 plan. It’s 3.35 acres not 3.19
    Get a grip Mr. Know-It-All

  84. 84

    D24U

    It isn’t that hard boys:

    Definition 1: Burton’s Legal Thesaurus, 4E. Copyright © 2007 by William C. Burton. Used with permission of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

    Contiguous: adj. connected or “next to”, usually meaning adjoining pieces of real estate.

    Definition 2: Black’s Law Dictionary

    What is CONTIGUOUS?
    In close proximity; in actual close contact Touching; bounded or traversed by

    Definition 3: con·tig·u·ous kənˈtiɡyo͞oəs/ adjective
    sharing a common border; touching. “the 48 contiguous states”

    synonyms: adjacent, neighboring, adjoining, bordering, next-door; More
    next or together in sequence.
    “five hundred contiguous dictionary entries”

  85. 85

    FUD

    Facts vs Lie is living in a fantasy of their own version of the truth. I know its cold outside. Open a window. Your kerosene heater is doing a number on your brain.

  86. 86

    Facts vs. Lie

    Initial request was for 206 units @ 60 units per acre.
    Amended to 194 units @ 57 units per acre.
    Now 179 units @ 48 units per acre.
    206 – 179 = 27 total unit reduction over 3.73 acres. (use 3.43 if you want)
    How can you state that the density is down 15 units PER ACRE when the total reduction in units on the entire tract is only 27 units?

  87. 87

    Remy Martin

    The moniker Barry Diller, Sr is using is the delusions of grandeur of the poster. Barry Diller, sr is a widely respected national developer, not a local blogger deadest on obfuscation, foolish and transparent shill pieces and hidebound defiance of our politically created code. The word contiguous isn’t up for debate in normal circles.

  88. 88

    Just Curious

    An observation; Couldn’t the developer just configure more 2 bedroom units in lieu of 1 bedroom units and bring down the number of total units and half the density calculation? The number of cars would stay the same, the school system would get more children, but you can get closer to your density number (30 units/acre) without the developer giving anything up.

  89. 89

    fyi

    “The word contiguous isn’t up for debate in normal circles.”

    But it is with the city of Brookhaven government and their commissions.

    Thank the folks who brought you this additional layer of government. Was DeKalb actually that much worse? You did save some driving time going to the meetings where your concerns were ignored. Local control.

  90. 90

    bldvl89

    They should do it! I lived in 30 story Buckhead condo before moving to B’haven – the Grandview – 8 units/floor, 4 one bed and 4 two beds/floor. Eight peeps lived on my floor, nine when I moved out (one owner got married).

    30 one bedrooms guarantee 30 peeps. 15 two bedrooms guarantee 15 peeps, maybe 20-25 (but not 30) and prorated over 179 units, impose that much less per capita strain on exisiting infrastructure.

  91. 91

    bldvl89

    Seriously – take 100 one bedroom apts and turn it into 50 two beds and you will reduce both density and bldg size required.

  92. 92

    Citizen

    Just Curious;
    That goes back to earlier conversations and asks that I have made to the developer concerning the small size of the apartments and the transient nature that comes with that. There is no market for a 650 sf apartment as a condo conversion in this area. I asked them to consider larger size apartments that would be far more compatible for marketability and increase the possibility in the future of conversion, provide more square footage for workforce housing and empty nesters, support stability within the neighborhoods, and fill a pricing gap that we need for ownership affordability. I thought it was a reasonable ask since it takes into account a look at the overall projects future impact as a whole and not just one aspect of it.
    Instead of giving any consideration to this, we are being asked to buy into the current sales pitch that with 650 sf units people can buy 2 units and convert them. This is far less likely when you have to then renovate 2 units later on that will require tearing out a kitchen, dealing with the separate metering, and re-configuring the floor plan?

  93. 93

    Susan

    Welcome to J. Max’s Brookhaven.

  94. 94

    Bob Sorrentino

    Just Curious – Yes he could but the structure would be twice the size and probably not fit on the lot, and certainly not with the townhomes, or be at a reasonable height.

    You kind of hit at a key issue that some in the city are not grasping. That density is a derivative of many variables. How big the box is, how much open space is required that restricts the size of the box. How high do we want that box get. And how big are the units going inside the box. It is not some made up meaningless term used to annoy people with. It is simply a quantitative tool used for analysis.

    The variables that go into density affect all sorts of planning issues. School size, traffic, land prices, tax base, sewer and water service, and the vibe of an area. And ignoring it borders along recklessness. Fortunately the city understands the impact a high density development will have on its neighboring area. They understand the need to cap a development at 30 unit/acre and have started the code change for sub area II of the overlay. More work needs to be done as D1 and D4 will still be fully exposed to PC2 and all its 60 unit/acre effects. The question is, that if the city acknowledges that we do not want the effects of a development over 30 unit/acre here, then why are they allowing a development over 30 units/acre (and not just a little bit either).

  95. 95

    bldvl89

    50 two bed apts require 50 kitchens, 50 living rooms, 50 utility closets/hot waters, 50 balconies. 100 one bed apts require 100 kitchens, 100 living rooms, 100 utility closets, 100 balconies. Dont need nearly as big and tall a building to do 50 two bedrooms. Not even close.

    Of course, that kind of basic common sense goes out the window when the City really wants something.

  96. 96

    Ellen

    You people are insufferable. Move on!

  97. 97

    bldvl89

    The promise of “self determination” is such the crock of sh*t that I thought it was at the time cityhood was foisted on me.

    City hasnt listened or worked with residents directly affected by all this; theyve worked at cross-purposes to those residents, and just given lip service to their very valid concerns, going out of their way to distort the sh*t out of the plain meaning of words and phrases in their own damn rules to suit the interests of a few who do not stand to suffer from any of the consequences of this rezoning.

    Many of us were fixed on a 30 unit/acre cap from the get go, but there are pro-developer, screw-the-resident insiders who keep trying to pin this 40+ unit/acre bullsh*t on all of us. Get a life, get a clue and get an understanding before you spew your nonsense out.

  98. 98

    He speaks the truth!

    Well said

  99. 99

    Just Curious

    This is a long chain. So the arguments presented to the city staff and to the planning commission didn’t convince them to support your position. Are you going to use the same arguments in front of the city council? Or are there other positions that might be more persuasive. I’m assuming there is no longer a dialogue with the developer. Is that accurate?

  100. 100

    Last stand

    You know what Just Curious – Go to hell – I’m tired of this BS – stop the damn games – you are just fishing to again one up all the hard work and time that citizens have put into this. You had your opportunity to support us and do the right thing but have chosen to strategize and manipulate against us. You could give a crap what we want or have already presented. Stop the political nonsense.. Rebellion is now the future.

  101. 101

    FUD

    Ooooooo! Looks like you hit a nerve Just Curious. Ol Custer here is having a temper tantrum. And is looking for support? The support is only as far as the successful completion of the requirements of the application just like everyone else.

    Suppose ole angry one if you wanted to cut down a tree. You file for a permit, you complete the requirements and the process is solved.

    Same thing here. Connolly applied, they went way beyond and worked with the cornmunity and now they are getting their approvals. Good for them. They followed the rules.

    Have a nice glass of wine and quichyerbichin.

    Thanks.

  102. 102

    Papa

    Simple minded FUD. Go crawl back under the rock you crawled out from under. No one cares what you say or think.

  103. 103

    FUD

    Ha Haaaaaaaaaaack. You seem to care! LYLAS!

  104. 104

    Eddie E.

    Au contraire, the city has ‘worked’.
    Those who bought and paid for it have used the leftover errors from the County to back the City Government into a costly corner.
    Who cares about those of us who want nothing more than to occupy and improve our own property?

  105. 105

    Saul

    Bob, D1 will be insulated from any extreme developments as we are mostly built out as residential. For any developments that do not agree with us, we are well organized and can rebuff what we dont agree with and our city will agree with us. Plus we have a secret weapon. The D1 Angel. He will protect us.

    D4 is completely different. We in D1 look to that fiasco of a city district as our economic generator. We look at Joe Gebbia as D1’s second city councilman and we have put him in charge of redeveloping our “economic generator”. Go get’em Joe!

  106. 106

    Get Smart

    Don’t you hate it when Saul is right. The D1 Angel actually said , “You’ve got to get organized. The AP/JF intersection is a Maginot Line. No development gets north of there.” Not sure how Ashton Woods got approved, but they probably aren’t going to get a sewer capacity letter after all the rumbling CB has done on NextDoor.

  107. 107

    Robert M.

    The planning commission was scared into their decision with a last minute threat of litigation. Litigation that Connolly has said more than once he would not pursue. “We have never sued a city. It is not what we do.” ALSO, at the last public hearing when asked if this doesn’t get approved what will you do? Reply – “We will walk away.”
    LIES, LIES, LIES !!!! This project is full of them.

  108. 108

    blind faith

    GO. AWAY.

  109. 109

    blind faith

    I find it hysterical you chose two pretty sleazy people to ‘be.’ You sound like a bad combination of BOTH!

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