Frank Lloyd Wright, one of the greatest architects ever, instructed us to "build your structure so that you may still look upon all that charmed you, and lose nothing of what you saw before the structure was built, but see more beauty."
This is exactly what the homeowners who live near the Fury's Ferry/Evans-to-Locks intersection commercial node want. This is why they are asking the Columbia County Planning Commission and the Board of Commissioners to approve the Nodal Protection Overlay District (NPOD) ordinances in order to control architectural designs within the node.
The public hearing for the ordinances supporting the Architectural Design Overlays for the Furys Ferry/Evans-to-Locks and Belair/Columbia commercial nodes will be resumed on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the Evans Government Complex Auditorium, after being tabled on Nov. 2.
Nodal ordinances will assure the unique identity of an area by establishing specific architectural guidelines. Without the ordinances, each developer may use his own design, which usually follows franchise and theme architecture. The result would be a hodgepodge of the same old, strip mall and shopping center designs we see all over the county.
We deserve better, we want better, and we are asking our county officials to give us better.
Regional and national commercial businesses often deviate from their cookie-cutter designs, and have done so in areas such as Hilton Head, Sandy Springs and Lake Oconee because specific architectural standards were required.
The Planning Commission and the Board of Commissioners have a golden opportunity to raise the standards of quality and aesthetics and to preserve the beauty that is being replaced with more and more cookie-cutter commercial development. If they approve the ordinances, their actions will stand as a role model and as proof that Columbia County has vision and courage.
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