Homeowners of the Buckingham subdivision, in Hampton, located in unincorporated Clayton County, came to a Lovejoy townhall meeting on Friday night to complain about the building of a gas station on the corner of McDonough Road and Panhandle Road.
“I am just to the point where my daughter is going to graduate, and [I’m going to] rent [my house] or sell it off, and go into another county,” said Kedra Shenett, who has been living at Buckingham since 1999.
Many in attendance expressed their frustrations. Several of them said they thought they were there to express their concerns about whether the station would be built, not believing it was a done deal. To their surprise, they were greeted by Robbie Moore, a local builder, and a partner in Moore Capital, LLC., who was there to discuss whether the residents wanted the exterior of the station to be made of brick, or stacked stones.
That indicated to many residents that the proposed Shell gas station is apparently already scheduled for construction, and their opposition or concerns don’t matter.
Moore said he was not the builder of the station, but had only made a bid to be the builder.
Shenett joined a chorus of residents, who said they believe the station will decrease property values, and bring more crime and trash, to the area.
She said she is considering a move to Henry County, or Fayette County, and is truly embarrassed of sporting Clayton County on her vehicle tag.
Dale Millican, another Buckingham resident, said the outrage of many residents is not exaggerated. The gas station will be directly behind a property at the subdivision, he said.
Residents also expressed concerns about the proximity of the gas tanks, and how near to the subdivision they will be placed.
“I am ready to run my car through a brick wall,” Millican said. “I am pissed ... you know. I am angry.”
He said there is nothing the city is willing to do to deter this from being built. He said he and the residents will pursue legal action, adding that the land the station will occupy originally was residential property, belonged to Clayton County, and was annexed by Lovejoy. It was then rezoned by the city for commercial use, he said.
Post I Councilman Tommy Green, III, was the lone Lovejoy city leader at the townhall meeting. Green explained that the three acres of land were annexed in March. He said the roads will be widened before the gas station is built there.
In June, during a council meeting, Post 2 Councilwoman Marci Fluellyn said there were no official plans for construction of a Shell gas station there. The proper paperwork was not submitted to the city at the time, she said.
When asked specific questions about when the proper paperwork was submitted, who the developer is, and who owns the land, Green said he did not know.
Fluellyn and Lovejoy Mayor Pro Tem Bobby Cartwright could not be reached for comment.