Vista Grove is latest DeKalb County neighborhood attempting to b - CBS46 News

Vista Grove is latest DeKalb County neighborhood attempting to be a city

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Proposed Borders of Vista Grove Proposed Borders of Vista Grove
DEKALB COUNTY, GA (CBS46) -

Every year, a different neighborhood in DeKalb County tries its hand at forming an independent government.

Some are successful, while others are not.

The past decade saw Dunwoody founded, followed by Brookhaven, Tucker and most recently Stonecrest.

Vista Grove is now the latest effort to get off the ground.

The area within the proposed borders of Vista Grove has been targeted for cityhood several times before, most recently in 2015 when the attempt to form LaVista Hills failed by 139 votes.

The most obvious change to the new map is the exclusion of neighborhoods southeast of the rails that pass under North Druid Hills Road. Noticeably missing from the new Vista Grove version of the map are some of the neighborhoods that voted against becoming a city before. Organizers of the current effort tried to distance themselves from past ventures.

Ben Shackleford is one of the people who thinks Vista Grove has a better chance.

"We have to think about our own interest at some point, like who are we going to be in the future -- that area between this and that, or are we going to be Vista Grove," said Shackleford.

Zoning issues are one of his top concerns, and he's anxious to see something done about the tall abandoned building at the edge of Spaghetti Junction.

"Until that becomes a priority for someone, that's going to be an eyesore and a lost economic opportunity for the entire county," he says.

But not everyone at Thursday night's first public meeting on the issue was a supporter.

One man complained that it sounded like an unnecessary extra layer of government. It's his understanding that a new city will have control of its own police department, parks department and neighborhood planning, but the rest of the services will still come from DeKalb County.

A woman at the meeting described how she specifically moved to the area to get away from Brookhaven after it became a city. She believes the change directly contributed to increased property values and traffic.

If the movement continues, Vista Grove could be up for a vote next year.

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