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‘Save Pine Log’ concerns as 14,000-acre Georgia property hits the market

Published: May. 25, 2022 at 5:41 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) - Thousands of people fear they’ll lose access to a major hiking, hunting, and fishing area just outside metro Atlanta.

Pine Log Wildlife Management Area is 14,000 acres in Cherokee and Bartow Counties, less than an hour drive from downtown Atlanta. The land is part of a 19,000-acre property put up for sale in May.

Aubrey Corporation has privately leased the land to Georgia Department of Natural Resources for the last 45 years.

Jim Ramseur of Lee & Associates is handling the sale, which he explained was prompted by increased development in the area. Ramseur says offers are already coming in – and he expects more in the future. He could not share who the potential buyers are, but offered insight toward what could happen next.

“Continued enjoyment of green space, as well as the need for smart development of housing and live, work, play projects, are an essential part of the growth plan for the area and these ±19,500 acres are right in the heart of that path,” said Ramseur.

An offering memorandum detailing the sale was released May 23 to potential buyers. Ramseur hopes to close the sale by the end of this year.

Many people who frequent the area, including hiker Steve Hood, hope Georgia DNR makes the purchase.

“It’s their ethical responsibility to preserve the ecology and historical places here,” said Hood.

Hood is one of the thousands of people who have signed a Save Pine Log petition. Hood expressed concerns the lush green space could turn into factories, warehouses, and mixed-use projects.

“We’re at the peak of the housing and land market as the economy is moving and places like this are getting snapped up and taken over,” he said.

In a statement to CBS46, a spokesperson for Georgia DNR said “The Department of Natural Resources is working hard to investigate all opportunities to provide public recreational access on this property into the future.”

Ramseur said the family selling the land is hopeful the vast majority will remain in the Pine Log WMA.

He said he has been in “constant communication” with the state of Georgia.

Fair market value will be influenced by the scope of the property – along with minerals and liquid assets that could be harvested on the land.