Public input needed for Stonecrest's 20-year comprehensive plan

Madolyn Spann, director of planning and economic development at The Collaborative Firm, announces the launch of the Stonecrest 2038 Comprehensive Plan during a Stonecrest City Council meeting on April 16.

Everyone with an interest in the new city of Stonecrest is invited to help design its first ever comprehensive plan, which will set the direction for zoning, transportation, business, public safety, environmental resources, and residential living.

This opportunity comes once every 20 years.

The first meeting of the steering committee for the Stonecrest 2038 Comprehensive Plan is on April 26, and will be followed with public meetings in each of the city’s five districts over summer.

The city has contracted Atlanta company The Collaborative Firm to develop the plan, for about $140,000, with a view to it being adopted in March 2019.

The comprehensive Stonecrest plan will establish policies and goals with a 20-year vision for land use, economic development, transportation, housing, healthy communities, and the preservation of natural environmental resources.

Madolyn Spann, director of planning and economic development at The Collaborative Firm, announced details of the project during a Stonecrest City Council meeting on April 16.

“This provides us with an opportunity to define the city of Stonecrest and the vision in which we see it,” she said.

At present, Stonecrest is operating under the DeKalb County 2035 Comprehensive Plan by default, as the city was only formed in 2017 after voters approved it in the November 2016 general election.

Spann said twenty people have been appointed to the select committee to help shape the plan, which will also depend heavily on community input.

“This is a broad group that will be representing and steering us through this process as well as taking input from the mass community,” Spann said. “I’ve made contact with each of these individuals, they’ve already been invited to attend the first steering committee meeting and they’ve all accepted, so we’re ready and rearing to go.”

A schedule of public stakeholder meetings, for Stonecrest residents, business owners, workers, homeowners, elected officials, city staff, and anyone else interested, will be finalized and published on the city’s website in coming weeks.

Public meetings will be held in each of Stonecrest’s five districts throughout the plan development process, Spann said.

She said it’s a state requirement for cities to follow a comprehensive plan to identify and address community needs, goals and opportunities across all sectors.

Once the city’s vision has been established and data collected, the plan will be drafted for review by citizens and elected officials.

Ultimately, the draft plan will be considered by the Atlanta Regional Commission and the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.

“When they’re satisfied with the document we’ve produced, then it comes back to the council and the council can adopt an official comprehensive plan,” Spann said.

Steering committee members are:

- Jason Lary, Stonecrest mayor

- George Turner, Stonecrest councilman

- Plez Joyner, Stonecrest assistant city manager

- Nicole Dozier, Stonecrest community development director

- Sabrina Wright, Stonecrest economic development manager

- Eric Hubbard, Stonecrest Planning Commission chairman

- Erica Williams, Stonecrest Zoning Board of Appeals representative

- Bernard Knight, Stonecrest Business Alliance Board of Directors vice-chairman

- Mera Cardenas, Arabia Mountain Heritage Area Alliance executive director

- Jetha Wagner, Stonecrest Business Alliance Board of Directors treasurer/secretary

- Vickie Turner, DeKalb County Board of Education member

- Alan Carlisle, Cadillac Fairview senior vice-president

- Patricia Elmore Edge, Mall at Stonecrest general manager

- Cheryl Iverson, DeKalb Medical vice-president of marketing communications and corporate health

- Matt Hampton, Allen Entrepreneurial Institute director of entrepreneurial programs

- Edwina Clanton, district 1 representative

- Tony King, district 2 representative

- Karen Taylor, district 3 representative

- John Castle, district 4 representative

- Cedric Rice, district 5 representative