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HENRY COUNTY, GA-REL Properties, Decatur-based development firm headed by Robert E. Lanier and his son Robby, is asking the county to rezone a 179-acre tract from agriculture and residential status to planned development which would include 75,000 sf of retail, 18,000 sf of office and 291 single-family homes.

The Laniers couldn’t be reached by GlobeSt.com’s publication deadline to learn the development cost of the venture. However, area industrial brokers familiar with comparable projects in the area over the past two years tell GlobeSt.com the estimated overall hard cost will be at least $35 million. They base their estimate on a $23.2-million cost to build the 291 residences; about $5.62 million to develop 75,000 sf of retail; and $2.7 million to erect 18,000 sf of class A office space at a construction cost of $150 per sf.

Because of the project’s size, the Atlanta Regional Commission and the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority are reviewing the undertaking before the county and planning commissions study the proposal, county planning staffers confirm for GlobeSt.com. The planning commission is expected to go over the project’s plans in early August.

Robert Lanier is a former police officer, county commissioner and a developer for 30 years. Among his company’s completed projects are the 300-lot Rowanshyre subdivision in Henry County; Ellington, a planned community with 760 lots on 242 acres in Newton County; Weatherstone, a 268 single-family home development on 160 acres in Conyers; and Ivy Oaks, an affluent neighborhood on Old Tucker Road near Stone Mountain.

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