At its July 3 regular session meeting, ACC's Mayor and Commission voted to give us the go-ahead to create Boulevard Woods.
Specifically, they voted to:
1. Designate the main parcel–the 1.79 acre parcel at 298 Barber Street–for use as a passive park;
2. Approve our concept plan for the park.
3. Authorize staff to develop a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Boulevard Neighborhood Association (BNA) to allow us to build and provide ongoing maintenance for a park;
4. Authorized installation of a crosswalk across Barber Street; and
5. Authorized the Mayor and ACC staff to execute the MOU, after approval by the county manager and attorney.
What this means is once we've got the MOU ironed out–a process that will take some time and involve approval by both ACC staff and BNA–we'll be able to start fundraising for the project. And if we raise the money we need (including donations of labor and materials), we can finally start building Boulevard Woods.
The commission vote was 8-to-1 to give us the go-ahead.
We owe big thanks to Mayor Denson and many Commissioners–including particularly Commissioners Girtz and Maxwell, and Commissioners Bailey, Hamby and Hoard. Commissioners Herod, Sims and Robinson deserve our thanks as well. They voted to give us the green light. Commissioner Kinman was absent, but had expressed support. And Commissioner Lowry, who voted against, did so for understandable reasons. He wasn't against the park, but wanted more commission-level oversight.
Please take a moment to thank Mayor Denson and your commissioners.
We also owe thanks to many ACC staff–particularly those in Leisure Services, the Landscape Division–who helped answer questions and offered advice, and to Athens Land Trust, who have agreed to be our partners in fundraising.
Finally–and very importantly–we owe our thanks and respectfulness to our park's nearest neighbors, especially Mrs. Tennie Brookins and her mother Ida Mae Griffin.
Getting the green light is a huge step forward, but the real work is just beginning.