A proposed large industrial facility has neighbors in a southern portion of Gordon County concerned.
A recent joint request from Curtis Development Group LLC, owner King Curtis LLC, and developer Thor NW Georgia LLC was filed Aug. 15, to rezone 111.97 acres located on Miller Ferry Road at Shaw Road in Adairsville (Gordon County) from A-1 agricultural to I-1 light industrial.
Miller Ferry Technology Center — a massive complex with 1.56 million square feet under roof and a project cost of $160 million — is being proposed for the area just west of Highway 41 south of the new South Calhoun Bypass, according to a recent development of regional impact application.
The site is somewhat southwest of the surging Union Grove development corridor on the other side of I-75, just north of the Bartow/Gordon County line. At least four major projects are planned in that area.
Initial plans show Thor Equities of New York, working with Curtis Development Group LLC, would add two buildings perhaps open by September 2024. Nearly 2,500 vehicle trips per day could be associated with the project, the state application shows.
Nearby residents say the two industrial buildings — totaling over 1.5 million square feet, would be too close to existing residential areas and existing farms.
“‘The areas farthest from the city center should be rural residential, agricultural, and conservation areas,’ These are not my words. These are quotes directly from the current Gordon County Joint Comprehensive Plan,” Shaw Road resident Shannon Diamond said. “Our neighborhood is not the place for industrial warehouses. If approved, there will be approximately 300 dock doors on these buildings for loading and unloading of tractor trailers.”
Diamond and others who live nearby the site have been putting out signs in the area and sharing information on the proposal through a Facebook page named “Miller, Leek, and Shaw Neighbors against Z22-16 Millers Ferry Rezoning.”
“There has been a huge surge of industrial buildings built on Highway 41, which is a tremendous inconvenience with traffic,” Bowdoin Lane resident Kacee Smith said. “The road is not currently built to withstand the new influx of traffic. Industrial buildings on Highway 41 is understandable, however, the proposed development of warehouses is not on the highway. It is in the resident’s back yards, right in the middle of residential housing and farm land. It is literally unthinkable that this land currently zoned as agricultural could be rezoned to be industrial.”
A public hearing on the matter before the Gordon County Planning and Zoning Commission is set for Monday, Sept. 12, in the Gordon County Judicial Building Assembly Room, 101 S. Piedmont St., at 6 p.m. Any decision made by the Zoning Commission would only serve as a recommendation to the Gordon County Board of Commissioners ahead of that body’s consideration of the request.
“As a resident of the Miller Ferry, Shaw Road, and Leek Road area, I strongly oppose this rezoning as it would affect my land value and quality of life,” Diamond said. “I ask that any Gordon County resident that would oppose these buildings in their backyard or neighborhood to please show up at the meeting and let your voice be heard. If they allow this to happen to my neighborhood, yours could be next.”
The project appears to be part of Thor Equities’ overall plans for the area north of Adairsville, but most of the rezoning that has already been approved touches Highway 41, or touches other industrial properties on the highway.
“I hope that the zoning committee and the commissioners take the time to think about how many people this will affect,” Smith said. “Do we really want this massive of a structure in the middle of a residential area? Decisions should be made to protect the value of the surrounding properties, the quality of life for the Gordon County citizens and the beautiful farmland that is part of Gordon County’s history.”
In December, Thor Equities Group announced a purchase of 82 acres off U.S. 41 with “plans to develop an 1,038,000 square feet state-of-the-art industrial property.” A media release from the company sites the project’s proximity to I-75, metro Atlanta and the inland port in Chatsworth.
“Thor’s construction plan includes top-of-the-market class A specifications including 40-foot clear height, an 8-inch slab, up to 306 trailer spaces and 577 auto spaces along with a modern design,” Chairman of Thor Equities Group Joe Sitt said Chairman of Thor Equities Group, Joe Sitt in the statement said in the statement. “We see Atlanta as a key market in our industrial expansion. Our plans to deliver a high-quality development will benefit our future tenants by enabling them to serve the densely populated Atlanta market or take advantage of north Georgia’s excellent manufacturing labor pool.”