Powder Springs residents voice concerns over growth

They came wearing “I love Mayberry” buttons intent on having their concerns heard. Instead, many Powder Springs said they felt shut out at Tuesday night’s Comprehensive Planning meeting.

“We are not here for you to give us this and just shut us down,” one man told city officials.

He and others have worries over a potential high density 200-unit apartment complex and parking lot changing the small town feel of the historic downtown Powder Springs area.

They were told the structure of the comprehensive plan review meeting did not allow for public comment on their concerns over the apartments.

“We want to make sure that growth happens periodically not all at one time,” said Anthony Rashad.

The city’s Economic Development team said Powder Springs is in the midst of conducting its ten year comprehensive plan, informing residents of its changing population, demographics, housing and more, which could include the new apartments to improve the downtown area.

The open forum scheduled for 7:35 p.m. involved table discussions with people writing their wishes on maps and placing dots on charts, not asking questions or speaking publicly about their concerns.

“Even a few minutes of the whole agenda to give some feedback you know publicly where everyone can here but they shut us down,” said Lauretta Hannon.

Residents were shown apartment complexes in other Cobb County cities the size of Powder Springs.

At least one resident said he felt the meeting had been partially hijacked by people who have not been part of the already in place planning process.

“They have their agenda and they want their small voice to be the big voice that controls the entire meeting, that is what I mean when I say hijacked,” said Steve Tamas.

All parties involved were told to attend the downtown development meeting on March 14 to voice their concerns.

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