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FBCC opens the New Year with annexation and redevelopment

By Jerry Gunn Reporter
FLOWERY BRANCH - Flowery Branch City Council Thursday night highlighted their first meeting of the New Year by giving first reading approval to annex and rezone nearly 20 acres of potential retail property and adopting its proposed ten year Old Town redevelopment plan.

Mayor Pro Tem Joe Anglin does not want that plan to just gather dust. Anglin was sworn in and re-elected Mayor Pro Tem by fellow council members; Mayor Mike Miller, with incumbents Tara and Fred Richards were also sworn in.

"We've spent time and effort and now we need to take the steps to work the plan instead of it just sitting around on a shelve somewhere for everybody to gaze at," Anglin said. "We need to actually get out with this thing and work it."

The plan project coordinated by Pond and Company of Norcross calls for major change that among other things would open up 13,000 square feet of Main Street retail space by building a 17,000 square foot municipal community center. Old Town would be transformed into a work and live area with parks, green space, quality town homes and a stronger connection to Lake Lanier and Aqualand Marina.

The plan received heavy community input at public meetings where citizens were asked what they would like a future Flowery Branch to look like.

Pond project manager Joel Reed projected funding sources over the next ten years at $22.5-million from Local Option Sales Tax, a new Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, and other sources with a project list amounting to an estimated $16.4-million.

TO ANNEX AND REZONE

Four parcels of land at Hog Mountain and Spout Springs Road across Interstate 985 would be rezoned for Highway Business. Mayor Mike Miller said the city would bring in a significant 'fourth corner' of potential commercial property.

"Assembled together those lots would create a very desirable spot for a larger development," the Mayor said.

Miller said final approval in two weeks would set the stage for that development that could include a new supermarket or even a new shopping center.
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