Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Jammed Greenway Meeting fills Dunwoody City Council Chambers
A special meeting to discuss proposed greenways took place Monday night at 7:30 at City Hall. My sons fifth grade geometry homework held my attention until the last second then I raced off to attend the meeting. When I arrived promptly at 7:30 the main parking lot was 95% filled whereby I had to hunt for a parking spot which I finally found on the edge of the lot. The line to get into the council chambers wrapped past the elevators and several citizens departed as I entered stating that they couldn't get into the the already packed chambers. After several minutes of waiting, I decided that I needed to be in attendance therefore I asked the Officer working the door if he could let me in the back council entrance, available by way of the police station.
When I entered the room, it was jammed with wall to wall people, many of whom were there to give public comment and were then angry to hear that public oral comment would not be part of the meeting. Warren Hutmacher the City Manager gave a quick presentation as to the 10,000 foot level of the greenway idea that was then interrupted a few times as residents poked fun at the slides or tossed in off hand remarks. Warren handled it well under adverse conditions. Then various maps and poster boards were put up for either red or green stickers to identify the feelings of the community and though I spent most the evening talking to people in the room, I believe Red was the preferred color of the evening.
Above is the photo of the map showing the powerline at Kingsley Lake with the Kingsley Swim Tennis shown at the middle left. The Red properties are homeowners who do not want the greenway to be forcefully placed on their property and/or are against the project coming on their land.
I believe that tonight was a eye opening experience for the Mayor and Dunwoody City Council whereby the public openly voiced their concerns with having a proposed public greenway on private citizens property when the citizens themselves don't want the project to move forward. Based on previous city correspondence, the City Parks Master Plan could be voted up or down on March 28th therefore it would be a Council discussion item scheduled for Monday, March 14th. My guess is that all greenways affecting private property may be removed prior to final adoption of the Parks Master Plan and that this discussion would take place on the 14th. There is also a chance that this could be an item for discussion this coming Monday Feb 28th but based on the last marathon work session it already appears that there are quite a few items on this voting agenda.
For those who were unable to make oral public comment tonight, Monday's City Council meeting will have public comment time available on the agenda.
PS, please note that I believe the North South greenway that splits the word Dunwoody in the photo below follows the creek, therefore private property would also affected there, as well as the powerline too. At the last meeting, the Mayor asked for an inventory of the proposed greenways as it affects private property and I believe this topic will be heavily discussed and considered by council before moving forward.