What happened to Langdale Park? 2022-08-05

Update 2023-09-29: After Hurricane Idalia: Langdale Park open for walk-ins, Withlacoochee River, Lowndes County, GA 2023-09-28.

Many people have asked, “Have you seen the land clearing near the entrance to Langdale Park? Wonder what that is about?”

[Langdale Park entrance and maps]
Langdale Park entrance and maps

Yesterday I actually missed my turn into Langdale Park because I didn’t recognize it, with all the trees cut down.

[Unrecognizable Langdale Park entrance, 15:05:46, 30.8874240, -83.3147270]
Unrecognizable Langdale Park entrance, 15:05:46, 30.8874240, -83.3147270

But that land next to its entrance has never been part of Langdale Park. Both sides of Hyta Mederer Road are privately owned. The owner is North Valdosta Road Partners LLC, according to the Lowndes County Tax Assessors maps.

[Map: Lowndes County Tax Assessors]
Map: Lowndes County Tax Assessors

That LLC has Registered Agent and Authorizer William P. Langdale Jr., according to the Georgia Secretary of State Business Sarch.

This LLC bought the land for $0 in January 2022 from WPL 2007 Family Trust, which bought it for $2 million in August 2021 from Riverplace Development LLC, which bought it for $2.2 million in February 2021 from an estate. I hear the land was for sale at auction twice, because the first auction didn’t get the minimum bid. Both LLCs have the same Agent and Authorizer, and note the WPL in the name of the intermediate owner. Don’t know why so many resales, but I would guess tax purposes.

Only one of the four parcels (the one at N. Valdosta Road towards town) is in the city limits: the rest is in Lowndes County.

[Map: city limits in VALORGIS]
Map: city limits in VALORGIS

I don’t recall any recent rezoning for any of these parcels, but it didn’t need any. That one tract in the city limits is zoned C-C and the rest is mostly R-21, with a bit of CON.

[Map: zoning in VALORGIS]
Map: zoning in VALORGIS

According to the Lowndes County Unified Land Development Code (ULDC),

“R-21, Medium Density Residential (21,780 square feet). This district is intended to provide for single-family residential dwellings on individual lots at a moderate density of development, consistent with the use of either county or private water systems or county or private sewerage disposal systems or both. The use of on-site septic systems may be permissible.”

So that’s two house lots per acre. Looks like about 12 of those acres could be built on, so there could be 24 houses. There is probably no need to build new roads: everything could be accessible from Hyta Mederer Road. The county might insist that that part of that road be paved.

These parcels are within the county’s water and sewer area (lines run along North Valdosta Road) and the parcel next closer to the river has Valdosta water run into it, so the one subject parcel in the city limits could get Valdosta water, and maybe the others could, too. If they put in septic systems that close to the river, that could be a problem. If they’re on county or city sewer, not so much.

According to Valdosta’s Land Development Regulations (LDR),

“The C-C District is composed primarily of low-intensity retail and commercial services generally designed to serve the common and frequent needs of the residents of nearby neighborhoods. C-C Districts should be located on collector streets where they are convenient by car and on foot to surrounding neighborhoods but will not cause excessive traffic on residential streets.”

So a strip mall along there could claim not only the residents of the subject parcels, but also people in the nearby subdivisions, as customers.

There you have it. Most likely a subdivision with stores along North Valdosta Road (US 41).

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

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