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Many new developments in Georgia encounter zoning issues

Over the years, many industrial businesses have gone out of business here in Georgia just as they do everywhere else. Sometimes, those properties stay empty for years until a developer comes along and wants to make use of the land. Unless the developer uses the property for its original zoning purpose, the new project will more than likely encounter some zoning issues.

For instance, a company wants to convert an old building site into a mixed-use development. The plan is to put in an amphitheater and apartments, along with spaces for restaurants, warehouses and retail establishments. It is intended to be place where the residents can work and live without having to travel too far from their neighborhood in order to shop or enjoy entertainment.

Before that can happen, the company will need to receive approval from the county to change the zoning from industrial to mixed-use. Unfortunately, the process can take some time. In the above case, a meeting with Athens-Clarke County officials is scheduled for May, but not to make a decision. The meeting is for information gathering only. An approval, or denial, may not come for some time after that.

When Georgia developers encounter zoning issues, it would help to be as prepared as possible for all of the potential roadblocks and questions that could arise. Presenting the relevant information in the best light could make all the difference. In order to increase the chances of making a good case and receiving an approval, it may be worthwhile to seek out the guidance and assistance of an attorney with experience in this area of law and with the officials involved.

Source: onlineathens.com, "Mixed-used development proposed for General Time buildings", Lee Shearer, April 26, 2018

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