Coweta County runs sewer from Newnan to PTC, enabling big growth
A new sewer line all the way from Newnan to nearly the Fayette County border likely will mean that Fayette residents driving on Ga. Highway 34 will be seeing intensive new development along the four-lane road in coming years.
It may look like the floodgates to development have been thrown wide open in east Coweta County with county sewer being installed at the new Fischer Crossings commercial development at Ga. Highway 34 and Fischer Road.
In reality, the current work is catching up with previously approved plans since the Fischer Crossings area was classified as a “Commercial Corridor” in the 2006-2026 Coweta County Comprehensive Plan.
The current sewer at Fischer Crossings followed the initial installation of sewer lines to the west on Hwy. 34 at Thomas Crossroads last year after the failure of some commercial septic systems. And in between the two areas is another that is designated “Neighborhood Institutional and Service Corridor.”
According to the comprehensive plan, a portion of the county’s Commercial Corridor designation on Hwy. 34 begins at immediately east of the Newnan city limits and continues to the east of Ga. Highway 154 (Thomas Crossroads) in the area of Ebenezer Church Road.
It is in the area east of Ebenezer Church Road that the Comprehensive Plan denotes Hwy. 34 as a Neighborhood Institutional and Service Corridor for approximately 2.5 miles to the east until just before the intersection of Hwy. 34 and Fischer Road where the designation again becomes Commercial Corridor.
The Commercial Corridor designation continues east of Fischer Road on Hwy. 34 and ends just east of Ga. Highway 54, or approximately .4 miles from the Fayette County line.
As noted by Coweta County Water and Sewerage Authority Director Ellis Cadenhead, the portion of Hwy. 34 designated as Neighborhood Institutional and Service Corridor, the area from near Ebenezer Church Road and extending to the west side of Fischer Road, is currently occupied with a number of churches, several doctor’s offices and residences. Fischer Crossings is situated in the area designated as a Commercial Corridor where only businesses are allowed to link to sewer lines.
As for the unincorporated east side of Newnan, Cadenhead said sewer service had been established for years but was extended to the Summit Healthplex area from the Shenandoah Wastewater Treatment Plant less than a mile away in 2004-2005.
Sewer lines were run to Thomas Crossroads some 2.5 miles to the east in the fall of 2009 to begin addressing the issues with some of the area’s commercial septic systems. The failure of some of those systems was noted in the Comprehensive Plan three years earlier. Cadenhead said that, much like some of the areas around Tyrone in west Fayette County, significant areas of northeast Coweta also experience problems with perc (or percolation), the ability of the soil to leach septic waste sufficiently into the ground.
Cadenhead referenced the position by the Coweta County Commission in 2007 indicating that sewer running to the east Coweta area not be used for residential service. He said residential developments such as the previously approved Twelve Parks project to the south off Hwy. 54 are required to establish community sewer systems that will be deeded to the county.
Coweta’s 2009 estimated population was 127,000, with a majority of that population residing in the east portion of the county.
It appears that the future, and the recession, will determine what projects are proposed and approved for Hwy. 34 in the Neighborhood Institutional and Service Corridor situated east of Thomas Crossroads and extending to the Fischer Crossings area.
For their part, and aside from Fischer Crossings, the county commission has considered three large projects since the recession began: a commercial proposal at Hwy. 154 and Lower Fayetteville Road and a combination commercial and residential proposal at Hwy. 54 and Ga. Highway 16 south of Sharpsburg. The only one that won approval was a scaled back version of the Lower Fayetteville Road/Hwy. 154 commercial project.
Just last week the city of Sharpsburg announced its intention to annex a part of the area west of highways 16 and 54 for a scaled back version of the same commercial/residential proposal rejected by the commission in late 2009.