0

Dacula partners with Chamber of Commerce for economic study

DACULA - Dacula became the fourth Gwinnett municipality to participate in an economic study designed to attract desirable

businesses.

Dacula will pay $1,500 for the city's portion of the study, whose total costs will be about $200,000, said Stephanie Hopkins, economic development coordinator of the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce. The city joins Snellville, Sugar Hill and Suwanee in the Chamber-sponsored endeavor.

The Chamber of Commerce hired Market Street, an economic and community development consulting firm in Atlanta, to conduct the study. A steering committee of about 30 community leaders will hold meetings from July through December, guided by Market Street. They will discuss questions such as what kind of place Gwinnett County wants to be, how to continue to foster economic growth while cultivating a high quality of life and how the county and cities can use their its natural resources, infrastructure and intellect.

During that time, Market Street will study the demographics, economics, transportation, schools, downtown development authorities and more of Gwinnett County and participating cities. The purpose is to develop a four-year strategy for growth and

development.

"This could help us as we work with Dacula's long range comprehensive plan," said City Attorney Dennis Still.

City councilmen voted unanimously to join the study.

McMillan Road widening

Dacula accepted a $30,000 Community Development Block Grant to help pay for widening and drainage improvements to the 3⁄5-mile-long McMillan Road.

Work should begin this year to widen the road by about 4 feet, cover over the ditch alongside the road,

run a drainage pipe and construct a curb. The entire project should cost about $300,000.

Dacula has applied for an additional $260,000 CDBG grant for 2007 to help pay for repairs, said Jim Osborn, city manager. If the grant

doesn't materialize, SPLOST funds might help cover the costs.