Growing pains in the city of Harlem when it comes to residential housing

HARLEM, Ga. – Deborah Stickeny is one of many business owners within the city of Harlem. She’s a fan of growth and hopes more people in the area can brew up some business.

“We’ve got a lot of support from the local community already, but I think it would be better with more population and more growth,” said Owner of Harlem Java House Deborah Stickeny.

City council recently discussed two areas where population could boom when it comes to residential housing.

One area is at Sawdust Road and Fairview Drive. The other is right in the city of Harlem off West Forest Drive.

People who live along these paths say they aren’t too happy having projects full of multi-housing in their back yards.

Businesses, on the other hand, are hoping residents will dive into the city.

“We need the business to come in. We want Harlem to grow. It’s already happening with businesses opening on Main Street,” said Bubbles or Not Employee, Tara McNaylor.

Right now, the city is faced with growing while maintaining the integrity and small town feel residents love.

Stickeny lives in Harlem and understands how other residents feel.

“I think the concern is traffic, congestion and cookie cutter subdivisions,” said Stickeny.

But, Stickeny is also thinking like a business woman and she feels if the city can take the time to really think before acting, it could be a win-win for businesses and residents.

“If we’re going to have subdivisions, have them quaint, cottage type communities…with golf cart paths, stuff like that. That’s the kind of growth we want,” said Stickeny.

There’s no word on when the city of Harlem will discuss the residential growth plans.

NewsChannel 6 will keep you updated.

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