CONYERS -- The Rockdale County Board of Commissioners will vote on a resolution to adopt an urban redevelopment plan at its Nov. 8 meeting.
The urban redevelopment plan, which also includes an opportunity zone, will focus on 1,600 acres that runs along Interstate 20 from DeKalb County to the city of Conyers. It includes Iris Drive and much of the industrial area on the north side of Rockdale County.
Catherine Mercier-Baggett, county planner, presented the plan at the Board of Commissioners' Nov. 1 meeting.
"The purpose of the plan is to promote the revitalization of areas that are in decline, and preferably through private investment," Mercier-Baggett said.
The plan is a collaboration between the Conyers Rockdale Economic Council, the planning department and other county departments.
It was developed by first doing an on-site assessment of the property through survey, documentation and photography of the area.
"The criteria that we used to establish this boundary were the concentration of aging and neglected structures, the faulty road layout, the substandard lots, environmental hazards, safety concerns and underdeveloped or underutilized property," Mercier-Baggett said.
The planning department then mapped all the opportunities available for the area. The concept for the redevelopment plan is based on making the area environmentally, economically and socially viable.
Mercier-Baggett said the plan contained three elements, including green infrastructure, walkability of the area and visual quality.
The plan would open up the area by breaking up big properties, and also by the potential addition of higher density buildings.
"At the core of this plan is the potentially future multi-modal transfer station," Mercier-Baggett said.
Mercier-Baggett said she was unsure of how the urban redevelopment plan would manifest itself.
"We did not work with a pre-developed master plan," she said. "We don't have all the details of what it will look like in the future -- it really is open to private investment."
The BOC will also vote on a resolution to create an opportunity zone.
Marshall Walker, director of planning and zoning, said the opportunity zone, in conjunction with the urban redevelopment plan, would provide some tax breaks.
"This is a job creation tool," Walker said. "There is a tax break on paying taxes for the employees -- $3,500 per employee -- which is an incentive for the business. It can add up very quickly for additional businesses to come in or for existing businesses to hire more employees."
The proposed resolution for the urban redevelopment plan is available at http://www.rockdalecounty.org/BOC_Agenda/Media/PDF_1108/8b2.pdf. The proposed resolution for the opportunity zone is available at http://www.rockdalecounty.org/BOC_Agenda/Media/PDF_1108/8b3.pdf.