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Gateway to Liberty

Glebe Plantation to be developed

POSTED: February 17, 2007 5:06 a.m.
Within the next 18 months, the landscape west of Interstate 95 and north of Highway 84 will most likely realize the start of significant change.
That’s because Chris Herrell, owner and manager of the newly formed company “Midway Holdings,” is proposing a mixed-use development that would encompass 388.3 acres at the intersection of East Oglethorpe Highway and Glebe Road.
Glebe Plantation
Known locally as The Glebe Plantation, the property is owned by four family members — Margaret Martin and her daughters, former Liberty County Board of Education chairperson Barbara Martin, local Huddle House owner Brenda Crawford and Carolyn Kelly of Savannah.
It is currently under contract, according to Barbara Martin.
Regarding the history of The Glebe Plantation, she said, the name means “land the belongs to the church.”
She said the property was used in conjunction with the old Midway Church and was deeded to its first owner by the king of England.
“It was where the pastor lived,” she said, noting it was where the minister made his livelihood.
The land was eventually sold to Martin’s grandfather and was later the place where her father operated a dairy. Today, Margaret Martin resides there.
A campground, ponds, the Huddle House - and an old windmill - are located on the nearly 400 acres.
The windmill, purchased by Barbara’s dad 30 years ago from a farm in Texas, will remain on the property at a different location after the sale.
One thing that will change is the name of the property.

Martin Plantation
In the future, the property will be known as Liberty Gateway at Martin Plantation.
“The Martin family has an interest in selling to the right developer,” Herrell said, noting they had a few key provisions.
He said they wanted him to be sensitive about the quality of the development, incorporate the more than 100 acres of ponds and wetlands, and allow the old windmill to remain somewhere on the property.
Herrell said he intends to honor their requests, and wants the “Martin Plantation” to serve as an upscale “gateway” into Liberty County from Highway 84 and Interstate 95.
“We’re just looking forward to it becoming a wonderful location for people coming into the area and a wonderful place for expansion,” Barbara Martin said.
The development is to consist of single-family and multi-family dwellings, townhomes, and retail and commercial space.
Herrell said there would be a private entrance off Highway 84 that would lead to the residential areas. Two other access points would allow the public to enter the retail and commercial areas, as well as some of the common areas.
The single-family residential area is to be constructed in three phases and would feature a traditional neighborhood design with Coastal Craftsman-style homes with front porches and sidewalks that front the streets.
The houses will be a minimum of 1,200 square feet with prices starting in the upper 100,000s.
Herrell described them as “high quality” and not “luxury.”
“We’re building a community, not a country club,” he said.
The multi-family dwellings would include garden-style apartments, senior housing and townhomes.
“They would have to conform to Colonial Craftsman style,” he said.
There are also tentative plans to include a gaited community within the development.
Herrell said a retail village with internal access would be located on 61 acres, and include parking lots and landscaping.
Eleven other parcels are designated for restaurants, hotels and other establishments.
Current plans - if all goes as proposed - call for residential construction to begin as early as this summer.
Completion of the entire project, to be done in several phases, is expected to take seven to eight years.
The estimated value upon completion is $150 million.
The project is expected to create 400 short-term jobs and 1,000 long-term jobs, according to the Coastal Georgia RDC.

About the developer
Developer Chris Herrell of Atlanta is the owner and manager of Midway Holdings, a company formed to conduct business in Liberty County. Herrell has investment partners but declined to provide their names.
His wife, Mary Agostini Herrell, is from Hinesville and attended Bradwell Institute. The couple has a home near Isle of Wight.
Chris Herrell is co-founder, principal, and head of the engineering division of Highland Engineering in Atlanta.
For over 20 years, he has been responsible for the management of the engineering staff.
The proposed “Liberty Gateway at Martin Plantation” would be his first development in Liberty County.
 
Details
Liberty Gateway at Martin Plantation
Type of development: PUD
Location: Highway 84 & Interstate 95
Includes:
280 single-family lots (224.8 acres)
40 townhome units (4 acres)
636 multi-family units (53 acres)
Retail village (450,000 sq. ft. retail space/61.1 acres)
Commercial outparcels (12 sites/27.3 acres)
Amenity center
Welcome center (1.8 acres)
Wetlands
Lakes
 
Specifications
• Eighty homes could be constructed within the next 18 months.
. All amenities would be owned, controlled and maintained by a neighborhood homeowners association
• The development features curb and gutter, sidewalks and underground utilities
. Sidewalks to be provided on at least one side of dedicated streets
• All front yards must be sod and would be maintained by the homeowners association
• Roads to be maintained by the homeowners association
• There will be three entrance points, including public and private access
• A 750-foot strip along Highway 84 is located in the city of Midway. The remainder of the property is in the county.

 

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