The Cherokee County Board of Commissioners say a proposed townhouse development in Canton strays from the type of land use envisioned in long-range plans.

In a presentation to the board at its most recent meeting, Principal Planner Margaret Stallings said the property in question is 4.93 acres at 200 Oakdale Road, just off Knox Bridge Highway near its intersection with Marietta Highway. Stallings said current plans call for it to be developed it into a residential neighborhood consisting of 29 townhouses.

“The county’s future development map for that area calls for suburban living, which is usually single-family detached residential, between one unit and three units per acre,” Stallings said. “It is a pretty busy corridor and intersection. You’re a stone’s throw from the on-ramp to 575 at this point.”

While the county’s future development map called for suburban living for the area in question, Stallings said the city’s development map showed it being in neighborhood living, a category she described as being a more dense use of land than suburban living. Other issues county agencies pointed out included the fact that Oakdale Road is maintained by the county, so the county would have to permit driveway access for the development, while there are currently no plans with the engineering department to improve either Oakdale Road or its intersection with Knox Bridge Highway. Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services noted there should be a water flow test done in the area and that the development should meet the state fire codes.

“Over the break, I thought about what we talked about at work session,” Stallings said. “What I think I was hearing from the board of commissioners was your concerns was the fact that it’s inconsistent with the county future development map, and it’s really out of character with the existing pattern of development.”

The last thing Stallings noted was that she thought it might be worth considering asking the city to do something similar to what the county would require in a situation like this were the development taking place in unincorporated Cherokee County, requiring the developer to leave a 35-foot undisturbed buffer around the edge of the property.

“Speaking for myself only at this point, I don’t object to an annexation of this property really. It’s a natural area to be annexed into the city, and it’s adjacent to a significant part of the city and there’s annexed property at least off and on beyond it,” Commission Chairman Harry Johnston said. “If we have any objection, it’s only in the level of development that occurs on it.”

Commissioner Steve West then made a motion to authorize Stallings to send a letter to the City of Canton, informing them the county had no objection to the annexation of the land, but did want to convey the concerns noted. Commissioner Benny Carter seconded the motion, which passed the board in a 5-0 vote.

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