The Oconee County Planning Commission tonight will consider a request to convert a portion of the former Green Hills Golf Course and Country Club in the far east of the county to a ministry college.
Green Hills Farms LLC, the current land owner, is seeking a special use to allow the Athens College of Ministry to develop a campus on just more than 100.2 acres on the agriculturally zoned land.
Green Hills Farms LLC currently owns 189.2 acres in the small triangle of Oconee County on the east side of the Oconee River tucked between Athens-Clarke County and Oglethorpe County. The property has been vacant since 2009.
The special use is only for the western portion of that acreage.
Oconee County currently does not provide either water or sewer to the land to the east of the Oconee River, and the narrative for the development states the college will seek to obtain water from Athens-Clarke County and rely on septic in the short term.
The Athens College of Ministry is an interdenominational Christian college “seeking to equip faithful men and women for ministry and Christian leadership,” according to the rezone narrative.
The college was founded in 2009 and began accepting students in 2012, the narrative states. The college currently is meeting at Watkinsville First United Methodist Church, 1331 New High Shoals Road, north of Watkinsville.
The proposal is for a $24.3 million project that will include 30 buildings upon completion.
For more, visit Oconee County Observations.
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