ALBANY, Ga. — The Albany City Commission paved the way for a pair of new businesses in Northwest Albany Tuesday night by approving rezoning requests on property located along Ledo and Dawson roads.
The rezoning of land at 2776 Ledo Road will allow automobile superstore CarMax to locate on the property between Byne Baptist Church and Geek’s Computer Store, while the rezoning of land at 2601 Dawson Road opens the door for location of a Gander Mountain sporting goods outlet in the field adjacent to the Albany Mall.
“This is a market we like, and we want to get this store open as soon as we can,” CarMax representative Keith Henderson told the commission at its regular business session.
Henderson said CarMax, which operates 118 stores in 55 markets, will hire from 20 to 30 local workers at the superstore, which is a Fortune 500 company. The Albany CarMax will also have frontage facing the Liberty Expressway.
The commission voted to end the 120-day moratorium on community residence/personal care homes by approving a text amendment establishing a new ordinance that addresses questions relating to what officials called an outdated ordinance. City Planning Director Paul Forgey said the new ordinance addresses concerns expressed by commissioners and residents who opposed the location of a personal care home in the Rawson Circle neighborhood at 910 North Davis St.
Resident Ann Mitchell, who lives in the neighborhood, encouraged the commission to use language the group opposing the new ordinance had written concerning a portion of the ordinance.
“Ma’am, we have a professional we pay to make sure we follow the law,” Ward VI Commissioner Tommie Postell said. “We don’t have to accept what you wrote.”
Louise Darley of Dawson spoke on behalf of the care given by Bailey Healthcare, which had sought to locate a personal care home on North Davis. Darley said her daughter, who is developmentally disabled, had been a resident of the state-run Rosehaven facility in Thomasville whose residents were ordered to be relocated as the result of a federal lawsuit.
“There are still 40 residents (at Rosehaven), and they must be relocated by June 30,” Darley said. “I was hesitant to take my daughter out of the facility because I feared she would not get the same care. But she’s getting great care at the (Bailey Healthcare) facility here in Albany.”
City Attorney Nathan Davis said the vote immediately ends the moratorium.
“People can come tomorrow and start making applications,” Davis said. Bailey Healthcare owner Randy Bailey said he would re-apply to open the facility at North Davis.
In other action the commission:
.364n Approved a one-day alcohol license for a Boys and Girls Club fundraiser on March 21;
.364n OK’d alcohol licenses for Coach’s at 2610 Dawson Road, JMD Food Stores at 1800 E. Oglethorpe Blvd., Karmen’s Food Store at 845 W. Oglethorpe, Speedy Food Mart at 1926 Martin Luther King Drive and Riverfront Bar-B-Q at 105 W. Broad Ave.;
.364n Signed off on $344,527 in funding for sanitary sewer work;
.364n Voted to allow of the commission to appoint one of its members to Keep Albany/Dougherty Beautiful and appointed Ward I Commissioner Jon Howard to the board;
.364n Authorized $300,000 in Special-Purpose Local-Option Sales Tax II funds for street lighting in the Historic Old Northside Neighborhood;
.364n OK’d the purchase of crushed asphalt for alleyways in the city;
.364n Approved the use of SPLOST VI funds for an accountability system for the Albany Fire Department;
.364n Gave the go-ahead for $177,075 in expenditures for concrete pipe.
Ward V Commissioner Bob Langstaff and Postell voted against the lighting in the Old Northside Neighborhood.
“I’m going to vote no, not because I’m opposed to the street lights but because I think we should use the funding to replace other lights in the city that are out,” Langstaff said.