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Developer’s plan receives initial approval despite objections

Local developer Bill Dennis intends to build five houses on property on Carver Drive in southwest Roswell. Following a recommendation of approval by the City of Roswell Planning and Zoning Commission, the Roswell City Council will consider the plan at a May 10 meeting. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

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A local developer wants to build five houses on property in southwest Roswell, but some residents in the neighborhood are objecting.

The City of Roswell Planning and Zoning Commission voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve the plat presented by Bill Dennis through his engineer, Todd Wagener, for property in the 2400 block of Carver Drive. City staff also recommended approval.

The commission’s recommendation now will be considered by the Roswell City Council when it hears the matter during a May 10 meeting. Public comments can be made at that time.

A neighborhood pool had been at the site for years, and several of those speaking at the Tuesday meeting expressed appreciation for Dennis’ work to demolish an aging structure and clean up the property.

But five neighbors said they opposed the current plan because they felt that five houses on the corner property would be too many. Three or so would be enough, they said. Some worried that the houses will not be similar to others in the neighborhood that are built on larger lots and that five houses would create traffic problems and, therefore, increased safety concerns for children. A couple of people also expressed concerns about possible devaluation of other properties.

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Commissioner Jessie McDaniel expressed his opinion as a real estate broker that the new houses would not affect the valuation of older homes. He said that appraisals, as a general rule, are required to compare houses of the same age when determining values. He also said that he thought a developed area with new houses could add value to the area. Wagener also explained that the space between houses, 10 feet, is more than required by city codes.

City Engineer Louis Najar said Wagener had already revised the plat to make the house lots wider and more compatible with others in the neighborhood. He and City Planning Manager Bill Morris noted that, because of the nature of the matter, the commission’s recommendation of approval did require a unanimous vote.

“I do understand what the neighbors are saying,” Najar said. “At this point, we have 23 percent of the neighbors complaining, but it does meet the specs.”

City staff reminded people at the meeting, a couple of whom talked about others not present who objected to the developers’ plans, that comments must be made in writing or at the City Council meeting to be considered by elected officials.

Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 310, or at reporter02@rdrnews.com.

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Lisa Dunlap is a general assignment reporter for the Roswell Daily Record.