I am unabashedly unapologetic when it comes to parks. Our acquisition of parkland over the past five years has brought parks within a 10-minute walk to more residents. It also allowed us to turn land into beautiful green space rather than increasing density with new development. Our popular Greenway and Alpha Loop have offered our residents connectivity to our great amenities. In short, investing in parks and trails increases the quality of life for residents and is an economic driver to attract businesses to Alpharetta.
Improving the quality of life takes time and planning. Over the past few years, we have cultivated master plans and projects that accomplishes the following:
1. Continue investment in the Alpha Loop and Greenway connections throughout Alpharetta to improve walkability and connectivity to Downtown Alpharetta, Avalon and North Point.
2. Develop neighborhood parks that will give more residents access to green space within a 10 minute walk from their homes.
3. Revitalize Union Hill Park as our newest trailhead for the Greenway
4. Invest in much needed improvements of Wills Park, which is the crown jewel for all of Alpharetta.
Since February, we have discussed bringing a park bond referendum for residents to consider in November 2021. We have balanced the park development between two parks east of 400 and two that are west of downtown to alleviate concerns of geographic disparity. We have added $7.5 million to expand our popular trail network of the Alpha Loop and Greenway connections to North Point.
Unfortunately, a minority of council has requested to postpone the bond referendum until 2022, with very little notice and even less details on their plan moving forward. After years of discussion and months of bond planning, the majority can no longer hope that a reluctant minority will finally be able to present a cohesive alternative strategy beyond let’s wait and continue to discuss it next year.
Five years ago, Alpharetta voters overwhelming approved parks, transportation and education referendums on a ballot. They saw the value in all three initiatives at that time and the same holds true today. Fortunately, I believe a majority of council and our voters are willing to continue to put our best foot forward for Alpharetta.
— Jason Binder, Alpharetta City Council, Post 5