Management Report – May 2016

Construction Update:

Bowl Improvements.  Construction was in high gear this month as we are fast approaching our first concert of the series and making use of the suites and control center at the top of The Bowl.  The VIP suites now have a copper-color roof matching those of the stage and City Hall.  Most of the brick and masonry work is approaching completion as the attention of the contractor shifts to finishing out the spaces, sidewalks, stage finish, turf, and landscaping.  The ADA seating area along with the suites will be outlined with picket-style decorative fence not unlike that surrounding The Bowl. While we have some remaining work to accomplish on the splash pad/water feature and equipment building, the predominant elements of the concert venue will reach completion as scheduled.  The contractor is working their way back toward the driveway on Temple and out towards the site with the plaza area, splash pad and equipment building next on the work program.

Highway 20 Widening.  CW Matthews continues to make significant strides along the stretch west of Peachtree Industrial Boulevard toward the full four-lane divided section, pouring curb and gutter and placing gravel base to get a little closer to paving this stage of the project.  Areas west of downtown still have a long way to go as grading, drainage and some final utility relocation, notably at Suwanee Dam Road and Highway 20 are still under construction.  The contractor’s schedule for completion of the Gwinnett portion of the project is the end of September, barring any significant weather or late utility delays.

Maintenance Building at Gary Pirkle Park. We are pleased to report that the new 4,000 square foot maintenance and storage building is complete.  The Recreation Department plans to move into the space over the next few weeks and prepare to set up operations out of the facility within the next month.

EpiCenter.  The groundbreaking date is still being finalized with input from our contracting, design, and marketing team.   The project team is meeting regularly to work through the remaining design decisions and finalize the construction documents which will follow site development this summer.  To support the groundbreaking event, staff is now assembling the Coming Soon sign initiated by the Player’s Guild which will provide the backdrop for the festivities and provide a sneak peek at the finished product.

Sugar Loop.  The preliminary report for the Sugar Loop Greenway Trail was presented at the Work Session last week and the final report is becoming a large part of our marketing and negotiations with prospective partners on the initiative.  The 16-mile loop through some of the more picturesque open spaces in and around Sugar Hill is now the subject of some discussions with GDOT, ARC, and other agencies as staff looks to identify funding for future phases of project development.

Retreat at Orr’s Ferry.  The facility on Cumming Highway, just before the Chattahoochee River, is in the late stages of repairs to the interior, electrical, plumbing, and mechanical systems to restore their operation.  The roof work is now complete which repaired leaks identified on the second floor of the house.  The conceptual drawings, completed in March are already proving valuable as we market the project to investors, developers and potential partners with the city.

Planning and Development:

Only three permits for new single family homes were issued for the month of April with an average of 3,509 square feet.  More single family and multi-family home permits have still been issued year-to-date in 2016 (107) as compared to 2015 (61), while a comparable number of certificates of occupancy have been issued to date for both years (52 for 2015 and 49 for 2016).

Planning and Development hosted our District review team late last month for the purpose of an erosion and sediment control program audit.  We anticipate a positive outcome when the Commission meets in early June. Once the State Commission meets and ratifies our agreement, we will have full authority to administer our erosion control plan review program entirely in-house.

Several new developments are currently under review.  These include The Preserve at Addison Woods re-submittal, Primrose Creek Phase 2C, RaceTrac, West Price Road Tract, and Sugar Hill Auto Collision.

In the month of April, 280 building code inspections were accomplished, with 10% needing correction.  There has been a 25% increase in building inspections over the 211 inspections which were carried out in the month of April last year; while 214 zoning and property maintenance code inspections were carried out, with 66%(135) resulting in a notice being served.

Existing businesses are also taking steps to improve the experience of their clientele and to attract new customers.  Kroger is working on plans to add a Clicklist to their store.  Clicklist is a service, for a fee, customers will be able to order a selection of goods online to be picked up at a specified time without having to leave their vehicle. Publix has also recently submitted for an interior remodel which will include reskinning and reorganizing fixtures, updating their Apron’s meals presentation section, and expanding their pharmacy.  In addition, Metroflex Gym, located next to Quality Foods in the Sugar Hill Station shopping center has upgraded their electrical capacity to accommodate better exercise equipment.

Parks and Recreation:

Recreation.  Our recreation staff has been gearing up for the busy spring sports seasons at both of our parks. Staff has been working to make some minor repairs to systems at the parks affected by weather changes this time of year.  In addition, staff has been working with our community gardeners to keep deer out of the plants as well as working on sprucing up the downtown with a number of landscape projects in front of the Suite Spot and City Hall.

Golf.  Weather conditions have been consistently favorable for golf during the month of April with a few days slightly affected by forecasted rain. For the month, we were just 5% short of achieving a five year record for rounds sold in April.

The course is now open on Mondays, allowing us to pick up a few more rounds than normal during the week along with adding a new weekly nine-hole tournament on those days.

Marketing, Events and Economic Development:

Sweet Life Concert Series.  Tickets are currently on sale for all of our concerts. The series is headlined by the eclectic Grammy award-winning band, The Mavericks at the end of this month, on the 28th of May.  The 2016 Grammy-nominated group hails from Miami and is influenced by the sounds of neo-traditional country, Latin, and rockabilly styles. We still have seats available, but the choice seats and tables are going fast.

Later in the season, we will be hosting Blues Traveler on June 11th and Kool & the Gang on July 16th, The Purple Xperience on August 13th, and Third Eye Blind on September 3rd.  To purchase tickets or a table, visit

Sweet Life Suites.  Only one suite remains for the Sweet Life Concert Series.

Sounds of Summer Concert Series.  The Sounds of Summer concert series features Joe Hall with the Haley & Alexis Band on June 18th, Fly Betty Band with Ants Trippin’ on August 27th, and Red Head Diamond with Moby Dick on September 17th.

Boot Camps.  Scott Andrews is hosting a free boot camp on Tuesdays and Thursdays in front of City Hall at 5:30 p.m.  The boot camp is free to the public, we just ask that participants enroll in cMeCompete and log their points.  Join the community and help us hold on to our title of Georgia’s Most Active City here:

Thursdays @ The Hill.  Attendance has been solid, but falling short of our 2015 numbers thus far due to rain at all four events so far this year. The next one will take place on May 19th with live music from Broke ‘N’ Glass.  Several food trucks will be out including:  Cousins Maine Lobster, Grubbin’ Out, Brooklyn’s Own, King Kabob, Angel Fire 7 BBQ, Island Chef Mobile, Bucket O’ Shrimp, Daddy O’Brien’s, and Not As Famous Cookies.

The Next Stop, which is an organization that serves adults with special needs, completed the installation of some bird houses around the city this month with several of them being placed at our parks and golf course.  These bird houses are made by members of the organization.  The Next Stop provides an opportunity for adults with special needs to interact and engage with their peers.

Public Works and Utilities:

Gas Department.  Staff continues to coordinate with the highway contractor, provide locate support and monitor their activity close to the laterals and mains as several segments of the road construction have come close to our facilities.  The staff is consistently keeping pace with new construction providing close to 500 utility locates, installing 19 new services, and setting almost as many meters.  In addition, we remain ready to support our current accounts as we investigate leaks and light pilot lights as a part of our customer support services.

Street & Stormwater Department.  As a reminder, the mosquito spraying program has been scheduled to begin on May 30th and run through June 10th.  A second round of spraying will be completed in July.  Today marks the beginning of our annual spring cleanup days. This week, our residential sanitation customers will have the opportunity to get rid of some unwanted bulk items via curbside pickup.  Recall that we limit the types of items that can be collected.  A flyer is being circulated along with a newsletter and website posting regarding the opportunity and limitations on authorized items to be collected.  Acceptable items include:

  • Broken / Discarded Lawn and Garden Equipment
  • Broken / Discarded Appliances (NO refrigerators or freezers)
  • Other general debris lying around the yard or basement
  • Furniture (Maximum of 3 small pieces)