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Sugar Hill park to be named after mayor

SUGAR HILL - The new 49-acre park on Austin Garner Road will carry the name Gary Pirkle Park, in honor of Sugar Hill's Mayor Pirkle.

Pirkle has spent nearly one-quarter of his life, nine years, in service to Sugar Hill, first as a city councilman, then as mayor. The city has tripled in size during his years in office, it retired an approximately $4 million debt and is building a downtown area from scratch.

"The biggest and best chapter in Sugar Hill is coming in the next five years," Pirkle said.

Councilmen passed the motion 4-1 in Monday's City Council meeting with Councilman Marc Cohen casting the lone opposing vote.

"I have an issue with naming things after people in office and those still living," Cohen said. "No reflection on the mayor, but we have an opportunity to let the community name the park."

Gary Pirkle Park, scheduled to open summer 2008, will feature 35-acres for passive recreation like soccer, walking trails and picnic areas, as well as a 14-acre sports complex for tennis, basketball, racquetball, classes, playground and exercise rooms.