I think it was a mistake to approve this. It’s going to take 20 years to build, and anything could happen in those 20 years. The economy could get even worse, Merrill could go bankrupt, and then you have a partially-finished resort just sitting there. Look at all the homes in Douglas County that are for sale because the city has built businesses near them–and no one is buying them. I’d love to hear if the people on Capps Ferry Road are going to continue living there after the resort is built. They must be giving Merrill Trust a tax incentive (or at least considering it, since I haven’t heard anything to the contrary), and then they must be thinking about the tax dollars that will come in. For them, it’s how much money will come in through taxes, not the well-being of the citizens. Who, by the way, will not even be allowed INTO the resort unless they are paying customers. Because there will be a gatekeeper.

From today’s Sentinel (should have been in yesterday’s, but they must have a 4pm deadline):

1,092 acre resort approved by BOC
By Winston Jones
Staff Writer

It took the Douglas County Planning and Zoning meeting less than 15 minutes Tuesday night to unanimously award Merrill Trust Communities and Resorts a special use permit for its planned 1,092-acre Foxhall Resort and Sporting Club on Capps Ferry Road.

Although representatives of Merrill Trust were at the meeting, the commissioners and P&Z board members directed all their questions to Amy Brumelow, county planning and zoning director.

The action came at the regular joint monthly meeting of the Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Board and the Board of Commissioners (BOC) to consider rezoning requests. The P&Z Board votes to recommend either approval or denial of requests and the BOC makes the final decision.

The planned development would include 833 residential dwelling units, up to 800 resort hotel rooms and 521 acres of open space for passive and active recreation. The development would also contain resort hotels, lodges and other commercial businesses.

On a motion by Tim Clower and a second by Scottie Dye, the P&Z board gave its unanimous recommendation for approval for the permit. The BOC voted 5-0 in favor after a motion by District 4 Commissioner David Latham and a second by District 3 Commissioner Mike Mulcare.

“A public hearing was held last time, so we’re not going to open the floor (for discussion) tonight,” Commission Chairman Tom Worthan said at the opening of the meeting. Several residents from Capps Ferry Road attended Tuesday night’s meeting.

The request appeared first on the April 7 P&Z meeting agenda, but the BOC voted to table the item until the May meeting. Worthan requested the tabling to allow District 4 Commissioner David Latham, who was on vacation at the time and in whose district the resort will be built, to be present for the vote.

Several residents spoke at the April 7 meeting against the project, citing concerns about traffic and the possible affect on the county’s Dog River watershed.

“This is a situation where we know the land is already zoned residential,” Worthan said Tuesday night. “The question is whether we prefer one developer to build out the community or several developers.”

Elmer Prather, P&Z Board chairman, asked Brumelow, “This land is not in the Dog River drainage basin, is it?”

“That’s correct,” Brumelow replied.

Prather also noted that the resort developer would be responsible for all its infrastructure work.

The only other agenda item Tuesday night, a request by Harvest Chapel International, Inc., for a special use permit to operate a church at 2110-C Fairburn Road, was tabled until the July 7 meeting because nobody representing the petitioner was in attendance.