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Southwest Gwinnett to hold CID 'kickoff'

From staff reports

LAWRENCEVILLE - Civic leaders, property owners and businesspeople trying to start a community improvement district in southwestern Gwinnett are holding a "kick-off" Tuesday night.

The meeting will be a chance for landowners to learn more about the proposed district, which lets commercial property owners tax themselves and use the revenue to fund public improvements, like landscaping and security patrols.

The districts also can leverage their funds to get state and federal dollars, making much larger projects, like parks and road improvements, possible.

Gwinnett already has two community improvement districts: one around the Gwinnett Place Mall area, the other along the U.S. Highway 78 commercial corridor.

County officials view the districts as a way to help revitalize neighborhoods and commercial centers struggling with urban blight, such as high crime and graffiti.

The southwestern Gwinnett district would be bounded on the northwest by Buford Highway, the southwest by the DeKalb County line, the southeast by Britt Road, and the northeast by Beaver Ruin Road.

"This is an incredible opportunity for the property owners in this area to do something about improving the property values and overall appeal of this area," said Emory Morsberger, who chairs the county Revitalization Task Force and is president of the group trying to form the new self-taxing district.

Morsberger said the district will plan and finance transportation improvements, beautification and clean-up projects, landscaping and crime reduction efforts.

The district would include Jimmy Carter Boulevard, Singleton Road and the Indian Trail-Beaver Ruin area.