Coming off the opening of its long-awaited and much talked about Town Center and town green, it might seem like Peachtree Corners leaders would be able to take a sigh of relief.
Yeah, that’s probably not gonna happen anytime soon.
There are several major projects on the city’s plate that are underway or are coming up in the next years, Peachtree Corners Mayor Mike Mason said during his annual State of the City address at the Atlanta Marriott Peachtree Corners Monday night. Everything from the upcoming opening of Curiosity Lab at Peachtree Corners to work on walking trails and the impending construction of a pedestrian bridge over Peachtree Parkway loom on the horizon.
“We started by setting the course and we succeed by staying the course, and that’s where we are now: lets stay the course,” Mason said.
There were four main projects that Mason highlighted as he discussed where Peachtree Corners is heading and its vision for the future.
The big one, he explained afterward, will be Curiosity Lab. A grand opening is scheduled for Sept. 11, which will coincide with the Smart City Expo Atlanta.
The lab is the product between the city and Sprint that includes a 5G wireless network and an autonomous vehicle test track which is currently under construction.
“I think that right now a big accomplishment was our Town Center (and) our next accomplishment is Curiosity Lab,” Mason said. “That’s the next most important thing we’re gonna do.”
Another big project is the bridge over Peachtree Parkway. Officials have been discussing plans for the bridge for years and Mason announced construction is expected to begin within “the next 30 to 60 days.” The bridge will connect The Forum shopping center with the Peachtree Corners Town Center when it is completed next year.
Next year, the annual Peachtree Corners Festival is expected to be held at the Town Center for the first time. City leaders have made it their goal to have the bridge open in time for the festival.
“That is anywhere from 10,000 to 12,000 people,” Mason said. “Now they’ll probably have to change it around a little bit but it will go into the evening and alcohol will be served. Do you really think it will be safe? We want the bridge to be done so it will be safe for any citizens to walk across.”
The third phase of the Town Center is also coming up, although Mason said a decision on what will be included in that part of the mixed-use development is about three to five years away.
Some options Mason said are being considered for the next phase of the development include a performing arts facility, a building to host events, gallery space, offices and an expansion of the new Peachtree Corners Town Green.
Public input is expected to be taken as part process, similar to the what the city when planning the pedestrian bridge over Peachtree Parkway, to sort out what should go in Phase 3.
“We have a five-year plan and we have a placeholder in Year 5,” Mason said. “We’ll talk about it within the next five years and we’ll be, in the next three to five years, fleshing out some plans.”
The fourth big project, which is also tied to the Town Center, is a planned botanical garden. It will be located behind the Town Center parking deck and alongside Cinebistro and include walking trails.
The garden is still some ways off, however. Mason said design work has not been finished and a start date for construction has not been set.
“It will come down (from the bridge) and you can go straight around and then go to the Town Center if that’s what you want to do, or you can loop around and go down to the flora and just enjoy it,” Mason said. “It’s going to be a very serene place that you can enjoy.”
There were other ongoing projects that Mason talked about as well. He said right-of-way acquisition is underway for the Crooked Creek Trail. Officials hope the trail will help spur development along the Holcomb Bridge Road corridor by offering an amenity that developers can use to attract tenants. Some projects, such as the Echo Lakeside housing development, built sections of the trail as part of their developments.
Plans are also proceeding for a senior housing community which will be built on the Fiserve property on East Jones Bridge Road along the Chattahoochee River.
“Things look good,” Mason said of the city’s future.