September 4, 2018 – At 7 p.m. at Buford City Hall, the City of Buford Commission Meeting was called to order. Everyone present was led by Commissioner Chris Burge in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Several planning and zoning matters were brought up for vote before the Commission. The first was by Gary Brown regarding 1.92 acres at 2715 Brown Road in which he asked be rezoned from RA-200 to C-2. The applicant wants to put a high end convenience store with a carwash on the property. Conceptual plans for development of the site have not been submitted. The application was tabled. The applicant will provide staff with more detailed plans regarding any proposed use.
A request to permit a used car sales and service business for 4135 and 4155 Buford Drive was brought before the Commission by Mundo Investments LLC. The special use permit was granted with several conditions.
An annexation and rezoning request by Claire W. Jackson for 11.99 acres located at 3600 Shoreland Drive in Hall County was approved with the zoning to be R-100. Homes in the $750k+ price range will be constructed on the land. No more than eleven homes may be constructed with average lot size to be approximately ¾ acre.
Two more annexation requests involving over 5 acres were approved. Those annexations were submitted by Daniel York and Johnny and Susan Maxey located at 3310, 3320, and 3300 Buford Drive, will retain its C-2 zoning and bring these existing businesses near the Mall of Georgia into the City limits of Buford.
The final plat for phase 2 for Ashley Falls Subdivision was approved. The City Manager and Attorney were given authorization to negotiate the purchase of land for the new BHS stadium and parking deck located at 2440 Buford Highway. Chairman Beard said that the construction of the facility may be several years down the road. The low bid on Espy Street alignment and intersection improvements was approved. The City Manager was given authorization to sign a release and waiver with Georgia Dept. of Transportation for a traffic control plan on Buford Highway during the free October 20th concert to be held at the Buford Community Center.
An amendment was approved to the current water distribution plan between the city and Gwinnett County. An area on Peachtree Industrial Boulevard in the southern part of the city has lower water pressure due to topography change on Peachtree Industrial. A large industrial building is proposed and Gwinnett County water is in the vicinity and can service with their water main. An amendment to the City’s parking ordinance was approved to address concerns from citizens in regards to tractor trailers parking overnight in large commercial parking lots around the city. This amendment will not allow for the overnight parking of the tractor trailers. Various pay requests for numerous projects throughout the city were approved.
Todd Cleveland with the BCC reported that 3,500 attendees saw the Mother’s Finest concert. He also reported that the latest production from Theatre Buford, See Rock City was a hit with possible nomination from the Suzi Bass Atlanta Theatre Awards. Buford Community Center is gearing up for the October 20, 2018 free concert on the lawn featuring LOCASH with Michael Ray and The Cadillac Three.
City Manager Bryan Kerlin gave his City Manager’s report which included information about a smoothness test to be conducted in the next two weeks on South Lee Street. Phase III of testing is underway for a new filtration system at Waterworks. Buford Highway widening project is progressing on schedule. The City is still in the process of working with the historical society and GDOT on any historical impacts on the Moreno Street project. The traffic light at Heraeus and Buford Highway is operational but the designer of the intersection must go back and redesign the sidewalks to better fit the topography of the area.The gas department is caught up on most projects but has eight new projects in the planning stages. Fall recreation leagues are underway and tennis just had a tournament which went well.
City Attorney Gregory Jay had no further business to add to the agenda. Chairman Beard turned the meeting over to any business brought forth by members of the audience. Penny Poole representing the Gwinnett County NAACP spoke up demanding more transparency from the city in regards to elections, meetings, and other city business. Chairman Beard asked Ms. Poole the chance to sit down with him to discuss her concerns further. Buford native Alicia Payne stood up to counter claims made by Poole stating that all the information she wished to find are always discussed at the monthly meetings open to the public. They could also be found in the local newspaper that is free and accessible to the public. A few others stood up to give their opinions on the way the city is run. With nothing further to add, the meeting was adjourned.
The next City of Buford Commission Meeting will be held on Monday, October 1, 2018 at 7 p.m. in the Commission Chambers at City Hall. The meeting is open to the public.