City Council members met for a very brief meeting Wednesday to approve zoning changes relating to senior housing developments and a neighborhood village section of the new Gateway Village zoning district.
In an effort to address a deficiency in housing options for residents ages 55 and older, the City's zoning ordinance has been modified to encourage development of senior housing by loosening requirements relating to density and construction.
"It allows another housing choice for residents 55 and older," City Planner Marvin Flanigan said during the council meeting Wednesday night. "This is independent living, not nursing or assisted living." He further explained that some of the changes for this type of development include: each development must be located on at least five acres and have a maximum of 150 units, developments must be at least one-half mile apart from one another and preferably in close proximity to retail areas such as grocery stores and pharmacies.
The council also approved an amendment to the Gateway Village District (GWV), which is approximately 400 acres along the Hwy 138 and GA 20 corridors south of I-20, to provide criteria for architectural aesthetic, landscaping, lighting, signage and site design. The GWV District is the first zoning district in Conyers to establish a specific color palette chosen to blend with the district's "equestrian" theme.
"We don't want something to come in from an outrageous standpoint, and that is really the safeguard built into this (ordinance)," Flanigan told the council. He said his department had researched the legality of the city enforcing a color requirement for development in the GWV district and learned Georgia law is "silent" on the regulation of colors. The ordinance lists universal paint numbers of colors acceptable in the GWV district, which Flanigan said are in the beige category.
"We did research in the metro Atlanta area, and currently there are cities and counties such as DeKalb, Fulton, Suwanne and Snellville using this same color palette," he explained.