When Is Village Center Zoning (VC1) Not A Village Center?

Saturday, October 17, 2020

When is Village Center Zoning not a Village Center? When not one of the Village Center (VC1) zoning criteria are met. After purchasing the Lines property and partnering with a supermarket realizing Walden’s commercial zoning only allows for 5,000 square feet, the buyer withdrew that zoning application and wrapped the shopping center project as a Village Center (VC1). I will not take the time to lay out the criteria of a VC1 in this note but have attached a link below for fact checking as well as informing. The point is that Mr. Trohanis led the effort to ignore all of the VC1 zoning criteria and allowed this 43,000 square foot shopping center project to proceed.

Bill Trohanis has done a tireless job in support of our Walden community. I dare say, few have worked as hard to enrich and preserve Walden. That said, his decision to allow the new development on Taft Highway is why I am supporting Lee Davis who argued against this project qualifying as a VC1. I realize that almost two dozen “conditions” have been tacked onto the project, but once the ground is broken, the train has left the station. Traffic, storm water, septic, environmental, and public safety issues would arise after the project is built. Maybe and hopefully the added tax revenue will be enough to compensate the future burden to Walden. 

This is not about a supermarket. I can debate convincingly the pro and con of having a 43,000 square foot supermarket complex in Walden. The issue is that we are making a mockery of our existing zoning by allowing commercial development that fits none of our current zoning. Why have zoning? With this precedent, I am not sure we do.

To mention, as I have read, the eyesore of Lines as a reason to allow this development is a bit selective. What about the abandoned church, vacant gas station now bus depot, lawn mower repair shop, and empty restaurant all a pitching wedge distance from Lines? Those are not necessarily things of beauty.  I wonder what will occupy the other two 5,000 square feet commercial buildings that are part of the supermarket project? 

Lee Davis has fought to preserve the bedroom community nature of Walden that drew us here in the first place. Out of place development and ignoring existing zoning has no place in Walden. I encourage you to think hard about the leadership Walden needs for the future and by all means, vote. 

Michael Leary
18-year Walden resident

PS: For details of VC1 and a legal opinion regarding the use of VC1 for this project, please see the attached link article from Judy Frank from the 10/5/19 Chattanoogan.com.

https://www.chattanoogan.com/2019/10/5/397454/Walden-Cannot-Legally-Approve-Requested.aspx


Walden Doesn't Need The Massive Development To Cover The Hall Tax

What Walden Wants And Needs

Vote The Platform, Not The Candidate


In Walden's discussion about the Lines Orchids Property commercial center, there has been a lot of concern about compensating for the loss of the town of Walden's share of the Hall Tax. I did ... (click for more)

The town of Walden has a very important election this Tuesday. We have the opportunity to re-elect Mayor Trohanis and elect Colin Johnson as alderman. Our mayor has served honorably and helped ... (click for more)

After watching almost an hour and a half of Thursday night's televised Presidential debate, the overwhelming feeling I experienced was one of sadness. I cannot imagine that, after watching that, ... (click for more)



Opinion

Walden Doesn't Need The Massive Development To Cover The Hall Tax

In Walden's discussion about the Lines Orchids Property commercial center, there has been a lot of concern about compensating for the loss of the town of Walden's share of the Hall Tax. I did some research and found that we had small increases in our property taxes in 2018, 2019 and 2020 to recover losses from the gradual elimination of the Hall Tax. These increases were voted on ... (click for more)

What Walden Wants And Needs

The town of Walden has a very important election this Tuesday. We have the opportunity to re-elect Mayor Trohanis and elect Colin Johnson as alderman. Our mayor has served honorably and helped us get to having a soon to be affordable grocery store and improved already existing properties in our town. His only motives are what's best for all residents, not a chosen few. Not outsiders ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Flash Flood Watch Goes In Effect As Heavy Rains Continue; Hamilton County, Cleveland Schools On 2-Hour Delay' Georgia NW To Close Campuses

A flash flood watch goes into effect beginning at 8 p.m. tonight (Wednesday) and continuing through Thursday afternoon as heavy downpours continue. Hamilton County Schools will be on a two-hour delay Thursday due to Tropical Storm Zeta forecasted to be in the area until 8 a.m. School officials said, "The high winds and heavy rains associated with the storm system could impact ... (click for more)

Health Administrator Says County Residents "Letting Their Guard Down" As COVID-19 Cases Spike Again; Seniors Advised To Have "Virtual Thanksgiving"

Health Department Administrator Becky Barnes on Tuesday said a new spike in COVID-19 cases is caused by county residents "letting their guard down." She said the “curve” had been flattened momentarily, but now the county is starting to see a rise in cases. For instance, on Sept. 12, Hamilton County was averaging 59 cases a day. On the week ending on Oct. 24, this rate has risen ... (click for more)

Sports

Roadrunners Come Up Short In Bid For Fifth-Straight Bojangles Tennessee Intercollegiate Title

The Roadrunners didn't get their fifth-straight win in the event, but they made a furious comeback that came up just short as Dalton State finished 2 nd with an 869 (+5) in the Bojangles Tennessee Intercollegiate at The Links at Kahite in Vonore, Tenn. on Saturday and Sunday. Host Tennessee Wesleyan finished in 1 st at 863 (-1), just 6 strokes in front of the Roadrunners. Reinhardt ... (click for more)

Lady Roadrunner Cross Country Team Edged 37-38 Southeastern At South Carolina Meet

The Roadrunners traveled to Bluffton, South Carolina in search of good NAIA competition. They found it in 17th-ranked Southeastern (Fla.). The race was intense and was a nail biter for the full five kilometers. The Lady Birds ran well but came up one point short of beating Southeastern. The final tally was 37 to 38, with both teams easily outpacing third place Ave Maria (Fla.) who ... (click for more)