THOMASVILLE — Thomas County commissioners approved a cell tower-related rezoning request, while tabling a land reclassification request for an apartment complex on Constitution Avenue.

Verizon Wireless of the East LP made the cell tower request to rezone Smith Road property from agricultural to agricultural conditional use for installation of a 164-foot mono pole communications tower. The property is owned by Rita Lucas and Sonia Minors.

The tower installation was opposed at the first hearing on the request. Complaints were that the tower would be too close to residences, in addition to concerns about whether the tower may cause cancer.

"The applicant met all the requirements of the ordinance," said Mike Stephenson, Thomas County manager.

The installation also meets all Federal Communications Commission requirements, Stephenson said.

Commissioners unanimously approved the request.

The board tabled a request from Apache Holdings for a land reclassification for 35.8 acres on Constitution Avenue property now zoned commercial general. The request is to change the classification to residential, multi-family to allow for construction of a 200-unit apartment complex. 

Stephenson said the "high-end" apartments would rent for $900 to $1,100 a month, depending on whether a unit was two or three bedrooms.

The apartment development would consist of 11 units per acre, which meets the county acreage requirement, Stephenson said.

Residents of nearby Huntington Pointe voiced opposition to the development, citing concerns about the complex's proximity to their residences.

Concerns were expressed about storm water runoff from the complex, along with the width of a natural buffer between the two developments.

The request was tabled until a July 28 commission meeting.

Senior reporter Patti Dozier can be reached at (229) 226-2400, ext. 1820 

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