Rome & Floyd County

The owners of an online custom shield and coat-of-arms studio are back with a new proposal to set up shop in an old industrial building on Fosters Mill Road.

Lindsay and Bonnie Mastro withdrew their application in May in the face of neighborhood opposition. This time around, they’re seeking the less-intense heavy commercial zoning instead of light industrial – and they’ve agreed to keep all the activity inside the building.

“This is a proposed adaptive reuse of a structure that has fallen into disrepair,” Planning Director Art Newell wrote in the staff report. It also would be spot-zoning in an area that is mainly residential and agricultural, he noted.

The Rome-Floyd Planning Commission will consider the request at its Thursday meeting, set for 2:30 p.m. in City Hall, 601 Broad St. Four other applications also are on the agenda.

The Fosters Mill property, at the juncture of Melson Road, is zoned residential but has housed a 6,000-square-foot industrial building for about 40 years. The building has been used over time for operations including Cave Spring Bottling, American Fire Wears and Garner Brothers Construction.

The Mastros want to rezone four acres surrounding the building and plan to live and farm on the remaining 64 acres.

The couple runs TheShieldFactory.com, an online store offering custom wall displays for families and groups such as military, law enforcement, medieval reenactors and colleges.

Opponents have said they don’t object to the Mastros’ business but are concerned about delivery trucks on the narrow roads. The major sticking point appeared to be what someone else might do later if the tract was zoned for industrial use.

The Planning Commission will make a recommendation to the Floyd County Commission, which will decide the issue at its Sept. 24 meeting.

Other applications that will end up before the county board are:

♦ A request for light industrial zoning 4756 Calhoun Road, with plans to use the existing block building for auto repair. The two-acre tract is currently zoned for community commercial use.

♦ A rezoning request at 105 Whispering Oaks Lane to allow two duplexes to be built on a total of three acres. The property and surrounding parcels are currently zoned for single-family homes.

♦ A request for a special use permit to convert a dilapidated house at 302D Pleasant Valley Road in Silver Creek to a duplex.

The Planning Commission also will send one recommendation to the Rome City Commission for action at the board’s Sept. 23 meeting.

The application is for high density traditional residential zoning for a house at 7 Sycamore St. The property is zoned for heavy commercial use and a potential buyer for the house can’t get a loan unless it’s zoned residential.

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