According to the Constitution of Georgia, governmental zoning decisions are presumed to be correct. However, Isakson Living is now challenging that decision by filing a lawsuit against Cobb County on April 16, 2015, 30 days after the Cobb County Board of Commissioners denied their rezoning request for the 54-acre Tritt property on March 17, 2015. Here is the entire Isakson Living complaint.
The county has 30 days to respond, so we can expect a response from them on or around May 17. The case has been assigned Judge Robert Leonard, who will evaluate the legal aspects of the Isakson Living complaint to determine if they are valid.
Isakson Living can request a summary judgment, which would mean the judge would only consider information presented at the hearing, or they can request additional information be considered. Cobb County could also ask for a summary judgement. The first step is usually mediation to see if Cobb County and Isakson Living can reach some sort of compromise.
If some sort of compromise were reached between Isakson Living and the Board of Commissioners, the Isakson Living rezoning application would have another 30-day public hearing period, and the East Cobb community would re-state the issues before the Board of Commissioners and again request a denial.
The Isakson Living CCRC plans have only been focused on the historical, hilly and environmentally sensitive Tritt property, which was listed on Park Bond 2006 and Park Bond 2008 as a property to save as parkland. The Tritt property streams run into Sewell Mill Creek, which turns into Sope Creek and finally into the Chattahoochee River. Many contend the Isakson Living plans would be environmentally damaging to this property and the surrounding areas.
This area in East Cobb is not only a residential area, it's a school zone for 3 schools, and no one wants ambulances competing with school buses on the roads children ride to school. According to the CCRC code, any CCRC should be located within 5 miles from a hospital, yet the Tritt property is at least 8 miles away from a hospital.
People live in East Cobb in large part due to the top-10 schools, and we expect children to be safe in this residential area from urban developments of regional impact.
Over 2,700 Cobb citizens have signed the online petition against the Isakon Living CCRC proposal (Z-2), with hundreds more collected on paper. More than 2,500 signed against the previous Isakson Living CCRC in 2013 (Z-43).
All communities rely on zoning ordinances to protect residential neighborhoods from commercial developments as well as overdevelopment.