Gwinnett Advisory Roundtable Recap
September 26th, 2023
Speaker: Jimmy Burnette, Mayor, City of Suwanee
On Tuesday, September 26th, 2023, The Council welcomed Mayor Jimmy Burnette to September’s Advisory Roundtable for Gwinnett County. Thank you Mayor Burnette for your time and thank you Jackson EMC for sponsoring today’s event.
Born and raised in Suwanee, Mayor Burnette witnessed the foresight of his city officials in the 1980s and 1990s in preparation for Atlanta’s outward expansion. They targeted a “live, work, play” concept that led to the Old Town master plan and prioritized open space. In 2001, the city doubled its taxes to spend $17mm on open space for parks, said Burnette. Today’s Town Center and Suwanee Creek Park, among others, were funded by this plan.
In less than a year, Suwanee will have completed its “Town Center on Main” project to expand the Town Center community. They are rerouting Main Street to promote civilian safety. In its place will be a large elevated walkway, green space for events, volleyball courts, water features, a veterans memorial, and art. These 10 acres will add to the 10 existing acres of Town Center Park. Mayor Burnette also highlighted the complete redevelopment of Playtown Suwanee, an expansive play area for kids next to the park.
Mayor Burnette concluded his time today by mentioning some future focuses for Suwanee. Further economic development will be difficult since the city is running out of room; inventory for housing lots is low and they are full on industrial and commercial space, the Mayor said. Suwanee officials have therefore identified pressing needs like traffic and infrastructure. A transit referendum will be voted on in 2024 and, if approved by Gwinnett residents, microtransit would be set to arrive in Suwanee by 2026. And since much of Suwanee’s stormwater infrastructure is nearing the end of its lifecycle, Mayor Burnette wants to rehabilitate these utilities proactively.
See this PDF link of his presentation for further details.