GAINESVILLE – The Gainesville City Council Tuesday evening approved the purchase of 21.24-acres of wooded property along Queen City Parkway and to the east of Lee Gilmer Memorial Airport.
“The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and GDOT (Georgia Department of Transportation) have been very adamant about trying to acquire that piece of property for some time and for safety reasons,” Gainesville City Manager Bryan Lackey told members of the city council.
“It’s that tall stand of trees you see adjacent to the Race Trac gas station,” Lackey added.
Rahab’s Robe, Inc. owns the property and has agreed to sell it to the city for $131,300.
“This is 90-percent funded by the feds and the state,” Lackey said as he explained the financing of the transaction.
“It’s actually bigger than you think if you look on the tax maps,” Lackey said after the city council meeting adjourned. “It’s quite a long stretch of property.”
The city will own the land which will be placed under the aegis of the airport authority to determine its best use. “You’ll probably see sometime in the next year, they’ll probably take off a good portion of the trees there to improve the safety for the approach for airplanes,” Lackey said.
When asked if the FAA has expressed any plans for possible future use of the property such as extended approach lights or improvements to the instrument landing system, Lackey said he didn’t think that would happen.
“They haven’t talked to us about new equipment there. It’s really about removing those trees in the flight path.”