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Partnership plan includes minority outreach, mobility

LAWRENCEVILLE - The key to Gwinnett's future lies in attracting targeted businesses, nurturing entrepreneurs, enhancing mobility and expanding minority outreach, a consultant said Wednesday.

Presenting a draft strategy for the county's future to leaders steered by the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, Mac Holladay of Market Street consultants presented a list of four major goals for directing the county's future.

To build Gwinnett into a premiere community, leaders should work on diversifying the economy, improving the education and work force, enhancing the quality of life and marketing the county, Holladay said.

Within those areas, the consultants recommended steps such as making the Gwinnett Center area into an entertainment mecca, creating an international business council and having a high-profile contest for architects to design gateway markers to the county.

Educational and quality of life improvements would help draw businesses to the county, in addition to giving the residents a sense of pride, he said.

"This is about Gwinnett taking hold of its own future," Holladay said. "It's about having a very clear plan."

Wednesday's meeting was the final community hearing for the Partnership Gwinnett project, which has civic, business and government leaders working together to create a vision.

Holladay said he hoped to have a final report on how the county can achieve the goals by Christmas.

But Bill McCargo, who is chairing the effort, said all the ideas presented Wednesday should be considered.

"It's like asking me to say who my favorite child is," he said of picking the top recommendation. "It's not easy. All of these have to be focused on."

To view the full report, visit www.partnershipgwinnett.com.