35-acre subdivision planned for north Veterans Parkway

Grayhawk Homes chief says subdivision would have 90 to 95 dwellings in it

tadams@ledger-enquirer.comSeptember 4, 2013 

A new subdivision planned on 35 acres off north Veterans Parkway would bring between 90 and 95 homes to the Columbus market, with construction possibly beginning next spring.

Tiger Creek Development, a company owned by Grayhawk Homes President Dave Erickson, is seeking to have 35 acres of land at 8800 Veterans Parkway rezoned from “residential estate” classification to “single family residential.”

The Columbus Planning Advisory Commission approved the rezoning case 4-3 Wednesday, forwarding it to Columbus Council in a few weeks.

“We have contracted the property on the north side of what’s commonly known as The Promenades subdivision on Veterans Parkway,” Erickson said. “We’re looking to do houses priced in the $200,000 to $230,000 price range.”

One issue is whether or not the development should access Veterans Parkway directly or through The Promenades, a maintenance-free townhome subdivision. It already has a street cut, Oriana Drive, that dead-ends at the property Erickson wants to build his subdivision.

“In the end, I think we will have an entrance off of Veterans Parkway,” Erickson said. “We may have to do some adjustments in order to make that work. I think it can and probably will happen ... But city council would have to make some adjustments to make that a real possibility. So we’ll have to see.”

The 35 acres, which Erickson is seeking to purchase for $1.3 million, has a large lake that he intends to keep. That would include reinforcing the lake and its dam to make sure it can handle a high volume of storm water, he said.

There is not yet a proposed name for the new subdivision, which is just past Hancock Road on the right side of Veterans (U.S. Highway 27) heading north.

That area of the city is becoming more congested as residents move into new developments already there or that are planned.

The Woodruff Co. of Columbus began work earlier this year on a 280-acre mixed-use development called “Old Town,” at the northwest corner of Veterans Parkway and Williams Road. That project, being built over several years, will include single-family homes, apartments, office and commercial space, complete with a town hall, chapel, walking trails and playgrounds.

A 2012 Georgia Department of Transportation traffic count shows roughly 15,300 vehicles a day pass through the intersection of Veterans Parkway near American Way. That’s the general site for Northside High School, Veterans Middle School and North Columbus Elementary. It also is a major artery for residents of Harris County going to and coming from Columbus.

Widening of Veterans Parkway has been in the planning stages for years. Georgia Department of Transportation district engineer Thomas Howell has said construction bids will be solicited early next year for a section from Old Moon Road to Turnberry Lane, slightly more than a mile.

The schedule calls for construction to begin next spring on a four-lane roadway with a raised median and turning lanes. The widening project should take about two years, Howell said, which puts the completion date around spring 2016.

Erickson’s proposed subdivision is about a mile south of his existing residential development, Ivy Park, which has larger lots. There are 70 home sites remaining there, he said, with additional acreage east of Veterans heading toward the Harris County line.

Grayhawk Homes is on track this year to build and sell between 200 to 220 dwellings in Columbus. Erickson estimates that’s about 35 percent of the local market thus far in 2013.

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