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Our vision: Improving the place where we live

Robert Ross's picture

Today we wrap up our four-week series highlighting some of the compelling goals and key actions offered in the vision plan adopted by the Fayette Visioning Initiative Steering Committee in June.

The adoption of the vision statement and plan marks the end of phase two of the seven-month visioning process begun in December and reflects considerable public input and perspective.

Four interrelated focus areas — education, economy, community and place — lay the framework for the corresponding implementation recommendations that will support the plan. Each focus area addresses issues and actions steps that if carried forward by the community can create an unrivaled Fayette County. The plan also defines the consequences to our community should we not take action to invest in the county’s future.

Previously mentioned plan highlights showed how Fayette can raise our already premiere school system to be a world-class Center of Excellence for K-12 and lifelong learning. The plan reveals that economic growth and competitiveness can be elevated by providing local jobs that align with resident skills. It also indicates that Fayette County must be a community that welcomes people of all ages and diverse backgrounds and embrace our county’s changing demographics.

The final focus area to highlight is place — building a Fayette County that is an appealing place to live, interact and enjoy. The action items in this area center on quality of life, housing and development and transportation infrastructure.

The Competitive Assessment identified some of Fayette’s critical issues as an aging population and stagnant growth rates. In the area of place, the plan recognizes that Fayette County must support new residential development options that will attract young professionals and families and allow current older residents to age in place.

Mixed-use, pedestrian-friendly environments appeal to a broad population of all ages should be a goal. Encouraging and possibly incentivizing such development should be intentionally considered.

Fayette citizens indicated their desire for local facilities that support artistic experiences and arts programming. Performing a feasibility study for a multi-use event space, expansion of county events and festivals, and establishing a central non-profit entity to coordinate arts events and programming would elevate Fayette’s offerings in this area.

In addition, maximizing green space and creating a long-term plan for county-wide parks and recreation will support a physically healthy population that can enjoy the natural beauty of Fayette County.

Finally, transportation infrastructure and mobility options should be expanded. The high percentage of out-of-area commuters places great pressure on Fayette County highways and roads. The county should continue to prioritize transportation projects that will provide high level impact and relief for Fayette County residents. Evaluating and assessing needs and possibilities related to local transportation and commuting is critical to long-term planning.

This vision plan is rooted in the public input and feedback gathered throughout this process and the success of the plan requires the commitment and unity of the Fayette community regardless of our challenges and sometime differing opinions.

Plans for our future also recognize the distinct differences in our cities, towns and unincorporated county and seek to preserve and leverage them.

The plan is in place and now the real hard work begins! The future prosperity of Fayette County belongs to all of us and together we can accomplish great things.

We encourage Fayette citizens and stakeholders to attend our next public meeting Tuesday, July 15, 2014 at 5:30 p.m. at Dolce Atlanta-Peachtree to learn further details about the action items and goals set forth in this vision plan.

Committee members will present a plan overview in a large group session. Immediately following, small group breakout sessions will be held where citizens can meet directly with steering committee members to talk in detail about each focus area, corresponding action items, learn how to get engaged in the process and ask any questions about the process and future implementation plan.

The Fayette Visioning Initiative is a diverse group of Fayette County business and community leaders who have come together to lead the community through a process to create a five-year vision plan for Fayette County.

Further information about the visioning process, the complete vision plan document, the list of steering committee members, and other important process documentation can be found at

Email to join the mailing list or request a visioning speaker for your group or organization.

[Bob Ross and Trey Ragsdale are co-chairs of the Fayette Visioning Initiative.]


This is getting monotonous. Every week we have to read where "you" claim that this has "considerable public input". If your select invitations are public, then I guess it has to be true, in your mind.

So let me get this straight. Mr. Tea Party is now discussing the possibility of providing incentives for a mixed use center? Will you have to turn in your party hat? What happened to less government? Granted Mixed use is good in some areas. Perhaps one of the vacant shopping centers could be a good spot with some government leeways. I would like to hear more about the possible locations.

Art Center? While art is good, we have underutilized facilities as we speak. How about helping one of the existing facilities grow?

Transportation. OK Mr. No T-Splost. Where are we going to get this funding for this? We need a real hard look at our transportation plan, That's a fact. Do you really think the present commissioners have the foresight for this type of planning? Will they call it a developers road?

Don't forget to save me a danish next week. I'll be the guy walking in late because someone didn't comprehend the Vision report which said that most citizens work outside the county.

Enjoy the meeting tonight, won't be leaving work before 6p and I have been told the general session ( ie question Period) is 530 - 600 with the whole event over by 730. To be honest even if I could make it, probably wouldn't. The tight schedule just speaks volumes about this "process" and the fix is in and I would rather invest in my family than waste time in this production. It might be easier to give people scripts with their parts to just perfect the nonsense.

I was glad that Bob got around to telling us we have decided an Arts Center is something we should plow money into like Clayton and Coweta did. Also it was startling to find out we needed a technical college like, well seemingly every other county. The crown jewel is we need walk about town center that are popular these days. Awesome. We have spent all these money to be like everyone else. Is there anything we need that isn't already a 30 minute drive away?

There was a time when Fayette was special like PTC and her 80 miles of cart paths now it seems the insiders and special interests have decided we need to be like places they dont want to live but like the ammenities. I admit I have given up as I would rather give feedback than have my mind mixed.

Bob and Virginia. I like you both but we need honest public meetings when real people can make it. The middle of summer at 530 pm doesnt really meet that level in my mind. In three weeks schools are back and people are off vacation. While I recognize that many people work different hours. I am willing to wager a 7pm start time is better for a larger group of people (well until sports start). Otherwise just have these public meetings at a ribbon cutting and leave it at that.

Sorry to be crabby, take care


But there is no chance that I can get from the north side of the perimeter to the meeting at 5:30. They simply DON'T want public participation. If they changed the format to the individual groups first and then come together, people would understand what's going on and then be able to ask questions.

They did it backwards.

7 pm would have been the best time to start.

I think the Bob Ross Art Center has a nice ring to it.

or lose your vision? What's new?

Who was the Einstein to schedule a community meeting at 5:30 when the report they presented stated that most people work outside of the county.

Lets just say, Neil was right. I could have spent better use of my time.

mudcat's picture

A Towne Center? An Arts Center? What for? The 5:30 meting thing has to be to keep opposing opinions away. They are probably going to make a play for some taxpayer dollars from Fayette County or Fayetteville and they will want to say "Everyone at our meetings was really supportive of this or that"

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