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Request to rezone Park 88’s Orr Parcel moves forward

DeKALB –­ DeKalb’s Planning and Zoning Commission gave its recommendation Wednesday to rezone part of the Park 88 industrial park to ready it for future development.

The agreement to rezone a portion of the park from single-family residential to industrial also comes with a promise to install a bicycle and pedestrian path near the park to accommodate employees who walk or bike to work.

While it has no current projects in the pipeline, Park 88 Group, which owns the development rights, said it wants to get the space ready should any companies wish to bring their businesses to DeKalb. Park 88 is 570 acres, located on the west side of Peace Road, south of East Lincoln Highway and north of Fairview Drive. The park includes a 102-acre site known as the Orr Parcel, which was annexed in 2007, according to city documents, and is the subject of the rezoning petition.

The petition will go to the DeKalb City Council for a vote at a later date.

Mark Goode, principal at Venture One Real Estate, Park 88’s primary developer, and Jeff Raduechel, senior vice president at Venture One, went before the commission Wednesday to talk about the history of the site, and their plans moving forward.

Venture One purchased the industrial park in 2009, and brought in three 3M buildings totalling 3 million square feet, as well as a Target distribution center.

“We worked under the existing development agreement, which is still in effect,” Goode said. “It was outdated, we no longer had an original copy, and we said it would be a good idea to go through the old agreement and see if anything should be updated.”

Principal Planner Dan Olson said over the years, some developers have expressed interest in the site, but the 102-acre space in the park was not zoned for industrial use.

“The developer has an agreement to make a one-time contribution of $20,000 for a public bike path,” Olson said. “The city plans to locate it to the north side of Fairview Drive, particularly to accommodate employees of the facilities out there that do walk and bike out there.”

Paul Borek, executive director of the DeKalb County Economic Development Corp., said Venture One’s efforts in Park 88 have seen 3.5 million square feet of industrial development occur, which generated over 2,300 jobs.

“Park 88 and their team are extremely resourceful in identifying project opportunities and aggressive in competing for deals,” Borek said.

Olson said the rezoning agreement would not affect the Target or 3M buildings, because those companies own their buildings.

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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