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DeKalb Zoning Board Rejects Druid Hills Appeals

An attorney for the Druid Hills Civic Association says another lawsuit is likely.


The DeKalb Zoning Board of Appeals has denied an appeal from the Druid Hills Civic Association that would have prevented the construction of the Clifton Ridge subdivision project.

The appeal was represented by two DeKalb County commissioners, Jeff Rader and Kathie Gannon, who were appearing as residents in the case.

Clifton Ridge developers were recently given a land disturbance permit that allowed them to proceed on the project. Rader and Gannon were hoping the board would reject the permit.

Instead, the board voted 3-1 to deny Rader’s and Gannon’s appeals to the permit.

The hearing followed a DeKalb County Superior Court judge's issuance of a temporary restraining order that halted work on the project for 30 days so the court could address concerns from the Druid Hills Civic Association, which opposes the subdivision.

Rob Benfield, the attorney for the association, said another lawsuit in DeKalb Superior Court is likely. It would be the 11th lawsuit in the decade-long dispute over the project.

Related Items:

Feb. 13 Zoning Hearing Scheduled for Clifton Ridge Subdivision

Druid Hills Residents Protest Clifton Ridge Subdivision

Scott February 14, 2013 at 05:51 PM
The land is private land. I don't see how there is an obstruction of democracy. The zoning boards don't create zoning laws they simply confirm if developments are complient to zoning laws. In this case the owner of the land want to split up the property and sell seven lots instead of three. No zoning board could stop that. If the owner had tried to change the use of the land to industrial or a multi use complex they could say no. But they are just building 7 homes instead of three. The civic association has a better chance at having some input on the design of the homes but they are new homes not historic in any way so they might be SOL.
josmwebb February 14, 2013 at 08:19 PM
It is, indeed, private land, but is also in a official historic district with it's set of legal guidelines enforcing it. Every person purchasing property here knows this, or should. As residents, we have the right and obligation to pursue legal actions to maintain the integrity of the district and it's codes. It's more than preventing someone from "doing anything he wishes" with his property.
Bryan Gregory February 14, 2013 at 08:36 PM
Barbara, developers cannot sue members of the ZBA. They can only appeal their decisions to Superior Court.
Scott February 14, 2013 at 10:03 PM
I live near the development so I'm familiar with it. It is undeveloped land. This is not a historic preservation issue. The only thing that these new homes should be required to meet is an appropriate design so they fit in with the rest of the area. Which is also b. s. since Druid hills has plenty of modern home built within the historic district. We don't have the right to have those homes torn down and rebuilt to meet historic standards. So what's the difference?
Scott February 14, 2013 at 10:27 PM
Also I would like to point out that a property on the Byway in Druid Hills near the intersection with Briarcliff was split into two properties and now has two new homes going up that are nearly complete. The Clifton rd development is taking 4 acres of land and dividing it 7 ways that's about a half acre each. That a lot bigger than the lot of land my 1920's home sits on. I think this is a case of some egos getting hurt.

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