A former Martinez grocery store soon might house a different kind of greens - that of money from a local bank's processing center.
Plans to fill the vacant Winn-Dixie store on Columbia Road with a processing center for Georgia Bank & Trust Co. moved forward to the Columbia County Commission after a recommendation Thursday from the county's zoning board.
The Columbia County Planning Commission approved a bid to rezone the grocery store property and a residential tract behind the store on Pine Cone Place from Commercial-2 and Residential-2 to Community-Commerical.
J. Willard Hogan, a real estate agent representing the bank, said the residential lot behind the store would become additional parking for employees of the processing center and that no access to the Pinewood subdivision would be permitted. Plans for the front portion of the shopping center include a future bank branch.
Several residents, including Robert Smith, said they were concerned about the effect on quality of life and crime that a bank might bring to the area.
"I understand the reason for growth. I don't understand why you're willing to sacrifice residents," he said
If the rezoning were approved, Smith said, many families in Pinewood were likely to sell their houses.
The planning commission unanimously approved the bid but added provisions, including a masonry wall and dense vegetation designed to separate the rear parking lot and the neighborhood.
In other business, the planning commission tabled three rezoning requests to their Nov. 2 meeting. Those requests were:
- To rezone 22.31 acres located between Byrd Road and Foxdale Drive from Residential-1 and R-2 to R-2 Residential Cluster Overlay.
- To rezone 4.9 acres at 4516 Jessie Road from R-2 to Townhome-Residential.
- To rezone 2.32 acres at the intersection of Columbia and Chamblin roads from Residential-Agricultural to General Industrial (M-2).
Also on Nov. 2, the planning commission will consider for approval a rezoning request for a 31.75-acre portion of a tract that straddles the Columbia and Richmond county lines between Pleasant Home and Flowing Wells roads. Developer Blanchard and Calhoun is seeking a rezoning from R-2 and Light Industrial (M-1) to C-2.
The commission will consider proposed aesthetic standards for new commercial and professional construction at the intersections of Evans to Locks and Furys Ferry roads and Belair and Columbia roads.
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