• Ask the Mayor Candidates: Thoughts on urbanization in Johns Creek? 

    By Staff
    September 8, 2017


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    Time to Decide the Future of JC

    It's clear that Bodker believes that Johns Creek cannot survive unless it develops densely. It's time for Bodker to go.

    Ed Thompson

    Mayor Mike Bodker thinks you're stupid.

    It's election time. Every single candidate running for election or re-election, save one, is doing so on a platform that urges a halt to high density development in Johns Creek, all intuitively understanding the direct correlation between continued development and the increase in traffic volume that all agree to be our MAJOR problem. And yet, here we have the Mayor advocating for MORE high density development under the guise of protecting our schools. I'll repeat: Mayor Mike Bodker thinks you're stupid.

    There has never been a scenario under which the Mayor has failed to support increased density and urbanization in Johns Creek. Several times, he has been seriously challenged by residents. The District, an attempt to create a high density urban core in Johns Creek was met with such resistance that it was eventually taken off the table.

    Having recognized that residents are vehemently opposed to grandiose schemes that drive us immediately to high density, mixed use developments, the Mayor has now become the master of INCREMENTALISM. His statement above talks about "low density mix". Make no mistake - this is a step in his plan to increase density that will be followed by the next step. A review of the Comprehensive Use Plan reveals plans to include four and five story buildings in several areas of Johns Creek. Combine that with the inevitable road widening that will be required to alleviate the growing traffic congestion and what do you get? We'll have the worst of Sandy Springs right here in Johns Creek.

    Mayor Mike Bodker thinks you're stupid.

    EJ Moosa

    I've been reviewing the Charter, and I've yet to find where the city of Johns Creek is charged with managing the housing stock in Johns Creek.

    Nor can I find where we are responsible for modernizing offices, adding more hotels and meeting rooms, and wedding locations. Nor or we responsible for absorbing a % of Metro Atlanta's projected population growth.

    But if the City is responsible, then how do we continue to add to our population and not also add more grocery stores, gas stations and liquor stores? Where are those plans?

    Let's be honest here. If there were demand for those types of projects, land values would be skyrocketing, and TPA would already be redeveloping, and modernizing their offices on their own dime. But the reward is not worth the risk in the current economic environment.

    It's time we quit playing Sim City-Johns Creek edition, and address the issues the City is charged to do, and do them at a level that meets our expectations. I encourage BOTH candidates to reread the charter and see what your responsibilities are supposed to be.

    Also, I haven't seen anything more than anecdotal evidence that kids in Johns Creek want to return and live in Johns Creek as adults. How far do you live from where you grew up? Where is the hard data and research?

    As for seniors, yes the house is big. Real estate fees and the costs of a 450,000 townhome make moving very costly. Do the math, and most are better off staying put and under-utilizing their homes.

    But the property taxes are the biggest issue. If you want to give seniors a chance to stay in their homes longer, eliminate the school taxes for those over 62. They could then use those funds as they see fit. The overall tax burden for a retired couple living in Johns Creek is astronomical over a ten year period.

    The ones that are moving are moving because they are fiscally smart, tired of the congestion, and have already seen their community change more than enough with urbanization.

    Richard :Loehn


    We have lived here since 1993, neither of our two children have ever attended schools in Johns Creek, and for that matter no school in Georgia. And being significantly over the "62" bar, we have paid enough in school taxes to have a wing with our family name. What is the solution Mayor, pack up an and leave? No, we have invested significant time and money as a partner with citizens who wanted to continue to sustain and improve on Johns Creek. As the first Board president of the Johns Creek Art Center I continue to take pride in seeing all of the accomplishments that are noted in their ads about their offerings.
    As one of the three original J.C. Symphony Board members. I was beaming with joy at their recent performance at Newtown Park. .As a volunteer at Emory J. C. Hospital with nearly 2500 hours I am excited to tell the many who come to our hospital about how Johns Creek is the place to be. ............well I am beginning to have my doubts.
    The air is coning out of my balloon much like the signal light synchronization on 141. Today on 141 at 11:a.m.I was one of few cars on the road, and yet, traveling the speed limit, I was the first car at every light from Wilson to Lowes. Remind me, how much did that technology cost?
    Council members, you may get me to do something others could not, DOWNSIZE, because I can no longer afford to educate other people's children who trying to move here in these high density developments so they can get our brand of excellent education at a discounted rate.
    Do not get me wrong, I am not lamenting what my wife and I have done, but now it should be someone's turn to ride in the first float.

    As the sports announcer says, "Come on Man!" "Give me a break!"

    Time for a change

    We are to the point it should be ABB-- Anbody but Bodker


    Thanks, Bodker. In the 9 years I've lived here, this city has gone downhill with your oversight. Thanks for making what was a tranquil area into an overly-developed city and making our residential roads a major cut through for semis and dump trucks.

    20 yr taxpayer


    A few years ago you were designing the "District" for millennials.
    That didn't go over too well with the long-time residents, so now you are proposing condos in tech park for empty nesters?

    Do you really think someone who has lived here for 20 years would sell their house and move to a condo in Johns Creek?

    You are out of your mind.

    Any empty nester who is going to move from here will go where it is cheaper and more relaxed environment, not to live in an apartment building on 141.

    Tom Tracy

    Bodker is off base with needing to allow higher density to downsize. No wonder all the townhome projects say they are meeting the demand for retire residents. I disagree; retire folks do not want multiple story homes. We chose ours because it was a ranch and it took awhile to find it but its our retirement home. The problem is the school taxes will cost us at least $40,000 over 20 years and when compared to Forsyth County thy provide a homestead exemption for 65 and older so you do not have to pay school taxes. I have been pushing this with the State Reps but get very little response. Bodker just wants to build more density, I say no to this and NO to widening our roads.


    Bodker is like a lizard that changes colors- spinning his stories to match what he thinks might fly.

    He does seem to think most of JC residents are stupid, and he just might be right. We'll know in November.

    I can tell you all here, five years ago I met with Bodker in his office to discuss my concerns about the growing traffic congestion, untimed traffic lights, the rapidly disappearing green spaces, high-density developments, and the overall direction of our city.

    I asked him what his vision was for JC. He proudly replied, he intended JC to become more like Buckhead. He stood up and with a sweeping gesture of his arm (as though he were a king), he pointed out the window and said one day even Tech Park will be booming. It will be full of condos, townhomes; and multi story apartments- providing lower cost living for the people needed to work in the service industry he said. There would be retails shops, restaurants, places for nighttime entertainment for "millennials", parking decks, etc.

    (Doesn't this sound like "The District"?)

    I told him I didn't want to live in Buckhead or I would have moved to Buckhead. I also added I did not believe the majority of JC residents wanted to live in a "Buckhead" type city either.

    He smirked and told me I might want to "consider moving someplace else".

    Although my husband and I have "considered" moving every year since my meeting with Bodker, we've simply been unwilling do so. This is our home- has been for 37+ years. Why should we be forced out?!

    We are empty nesters now, and would never consider down-sizing and staying in JC. Most of our older friends (55+) have left over the last 5 years or so. Not one of them even considered downsizing here. They were disgusted and fed up with the direction our city has taken.

    I echo what each and every one of you eloquently and intelligently posted above.

    Johns Creek - Time for Real Leadership and Vision

    Johns Creek is turning into the "worst looking" suburb full of apartments, low end town-homes, massage parlors, nail salons, smoke shops and fast food franchise eating establishments. High density living is not what Johns Creek residents want. We want a family friendly, low density, high end housing with a distinctive living environment with fun and unique small business owned shopping and restaurants that are walking, golf cart and biking friendly. Instead we have high schools across from each other that our kids cannot walk to or cross the busy Medlock Bridge road due to traffic congestion and 55 mph speed limits. Our schools are over crowded due to non-US citizens flocking to our zip code for our free education. Park systems?? Do they even exist in Johns Creek! Gwinnett Cty has the best baseball, soccer, dog, skate, lacrosse parks in the ATL area. Bike and walking friendly with appropriate parking and tree lined communities. Take a look at Milton, Ole Towne Duluth - these are communities that are becoming unique with distinctive character for their citizens. In my next post - I will show pictures of these new developments in Milton and Duluth as a model of what Johns Creek was supposed to be...

    Bodker must go - his vision is not the citizens of Johns Creek vision - he is about padding his wallet with advice from developers who are giving unsound advice and master plans that benefit Bodker, the board and the developers - not us - the citizens. Enough - time for real vision and leadership.

    Suzi Krizan

    I have a question...if all this building continues, won't the "Golden Goose" schools ( as Bodker calls them) suffer? Won't they get overcrowded?


    I agree with most everything stated above and wanted to also mention an idea to cut down on some traffic. Redistricting the schools. My home is close and an easy drive to Northview, but my home is in the Chattahoochee school district. An even bigger example, the new homes they are building ACROSS THE STREET from Northview baseball field are in the John Creek High School district. So instead of the kids walking across the street to go to school the kids wait for a bus to drive through traffic, pick them up and can take a bus down 141 to Johns Creek HS (or drive themselves down 141). This make absolutely no sense.
    P.S. when I downsize I am not moving into a 2 or 3 story anything. This is absolutely not want retired citizens want.


    Schools are a county issue, not a city one.

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