Residents fascinated at showing

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Would Ed Bowman like to see an Augusta with landscaped roadways, thriving retail sections and highway corridors packed with businesses providing jobs?

People at Augusta Technical College check out blueprints for Richmond County's $1.1 billion master plan for revitalization.   Michael Holahan/Staff
Michael Holahan/Staff
People at Augusta Technical College check out blueprints for Richmond County's $1.1 billion master plan for revitalization.

"Of course I would," said the Augusta resident and commercial property owner. "Augusta has always been known for one big thing: the Augusta National. Let's let the world get a peek at something else than the Washington Road side of town."

Bowman's hunger for a grander city was fed Thursday when planners for the Augusta Sustainable Development Agenda revealed details of the $1.1 billion facelift of Richmond County.

"I'm excited about it," Bowman said. "I just hope they see it through."

John Shields, the president of Shields Design LLC that designed the plan, presented a blueprint of changes for the urban, suburban and rural sections of the county to about 150 people at Augusta Technical College's auditorium.

The master plan that was 16 months in the making drew mostly positive feedback from audience members, but also raised questions about the realism of such an intensive overhaul.

"The plan is brilliant ... it's a masterpiece," said David Penix, an attendee and the owner of an Augusta commercial real estate firm.

Penix said the recovering economy in Augusta provides an open door to build new homes, parks, infrastructure, roadways and cleaner neighborhoods, which are all outlined in the master plan.

Those ideas need to be sustained by people who can afford to buy the homes, shop in the retail centers and support the infrastructure, said Erick Montgomery, the executive director of Historic Augusta.

"It's very ambitious, and in order to realize all of this, it seems like we need to populate more income, better jobs," Montgomery said. "This is the land-use plan, but is there a plan to put in place so all of this can come into reality?"

Shields said that is where the community must come into play. In order for the revitalization of area to become a reality, groups must come together to implement changes and begin construction projects.

He has called for the organization of an Office of ASDA Implementation, which will be a fully staffed office to carry out the ideas of the plan.

"This is no the end of the plan," Shields said. "It's the beginning. It's a starting point."

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Indigo
4
Points
Indigo 10/15/10 - 07:49 am
0
0
yawn.......

yawn.......

corgimom
51774
Points
corgimom 10/15/10 - 08:25 am
0
0
I wonder if anyone has

I wonder if anyone has considered how the furloughed teachers and municipal employees feel- on one hand, Augusta is saying "We're broke", on the other hand they unveil grandiose plans for redevelopment estimated to cost $1.1 billion.

Before you start construction, you NEED MONEY. You NEED JOBS.

And call center jobs paying $10 per hour won't cut it.

usafvet
3
Points
usafvet 10/15/10 - 09:07 am
0
0
As long as Augusta has the

As long as Augusta has the same demographics, it will remain the same. The entitlement programs, section 8 housing, illegitimate children, generational welfare, gangs, thugs, crooks, etc. can do nothing but ruin a city. The tax paying citizens of Augusta/Richmond county have been taxed too much already in order to provide for those too sorry to provide for themselves and their off spring. The liberal/socialist agenda has destroyed this community and is destroying the entire country. Our school systems are horrible because they have too many unqualified teachers, they are inundated with students that don't want to learn, some can't learn, and these are prohibiting those that can learn and want to learn from getting the education they deserve. All of this is causing people to move out, causing more financial woes. Bottom line, this city/county has more democrats than the Republicans can AFFORD.

egan01
0
Points
egan01 10/15/10 - 09:12 am
0
0
They do not have the 1.1

They do not have the 1.1 billion so the half million for the redevelopement study is a waste.

seenitB4
129173
Points
seenitB4 10/15/10 - 09:28 am
0
0
Come now....let's be

Come now....let's be POSITIVE.....Windsor Spring area--Peach Orchard Rd area- Butler creek-Southgate-----if we can revive these areas..just think Regency Mall can come alive too....:) :) Here's looking at ya.
Hope it works.

Riverman1
121263
Points
Riverman1 10/15/10 - 10:16 am
0
0
Sure some question whether

Sure some question whether it's realistic. We can propose anything, but if you can't pay for it, isn't that a major flaw that's not being written about? Doesn't the Chronicle get this logic problem?

A better study would have been one that focused on what we could pay for. This one is useless.

Someone brought up the N. Augusta master plan as being an example of what plans can accomplish, but that was one designed around likely available funds. Understand the difference?

Thethirdjq
214
Points
Thethirdjq 10/15/10 - 10:21 am
0
0
This proposal outlines a

This proposal outlines a vision with strategic goals. The implementation of this plan is the responsibility of the citizens of Augusta. So many readers write this off once they see the estimated cost. However, the first statements addressing the cost is that this is a big plan and will take at least two decades. Small projects in the beginning will certainly pay off and lead the way with revenue for bigger projects later. No one is saying we are going to start this tomorrow, but for Augusta to become a magnet for industry and business, it has to have plans and visions like this.

countyman
23597
Points
countyman 10/15/10 - 10:50 am
0
0
The master plan is over 20

The master plan is over 20 years and includes private and public money. Augusta slashed two fourlough days because of increased tax revenue. There will only be two furlough days in RC. Hundreds of cities have cut jobs and approved more than two furlough days this year..

ADP, ESI, Procter & Gamble, etc have brought good paying jobs to Augusta.

The $100 million BottleTek facility should be here in 2011-2012.. 100 high paying jobs.. ADP is building a second facility next door to their current one.. The negativity can't hide the progress. Almost 500 new jobs in 16 days during a recession..

countyman
23597
Points
countyman 10/15/10 - 11:13 am
0
0
75% to 80% of the RC master

75% to 80% of the RC master plan is private money.

The first master plan(Westobou)was the Augusta/North Augusta master plan. The plan included private and public money.

Augusta resident
1370
Points
Augusta resident 10/15/10 - 11:20 am
0
0
Didn't we spend this much on

Didn't we spend this much on a parking study? We didn't like what they recommended so we wasted that money and have the same parking problems. South Augusta gave up a great deal on a drag strip so that right there tells me why South Augusta won't rebound. Don't even get me started on the Bass Pro Shop shopping center that was suppose to be open a year ago. We can't complete that and they want to spend half a mil to see what else they can't complete?

countyman
23597
Points
countyman 10/15/10 - 12:39 pm
0
0
The Village at

The Village at Riverwatch(Bass Pro) is a private developer. Huntsville, Alabama is still waiting on their Bass Pro to be built. The recession has affected every city in the united states. The Bass Pro in West Augusta will be built sooner or later. The city of Augusta is listed as a future store on the website..
http://www.basspro.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CFPageC?appID=94&storeI...

The Augusta/N. Augusta plan was completed 19th months ago. There are already major signs of progress. The same people said those plans wouldn't be completed either.

Hmm? Augusta leaders are acquiring land near the Judicial Center on Walton way for a new park. A company recently purchased the entire second floor at Sutherland Mill in the Saint Sebastian Health Sciences Park. North Augusta has purchased about 6 acres adjoining the river and an old 5.5-acre brick pond.

Augusta/North Augusta master plan

Completed
Saint Sebastian(except the 15th street part), library, North Augusta municipal center, Sutherland Mill, etc.

Under construction
Tee center, dental school, kroc center, judicial center, parking deck, Walton Oaks, laney walker developments, etc.

About to begin
Broad Mill Village, Martha Lester school, new park, First Stop Village, Eve Street Row, Broad street lights, etc...

The Westobou River Crossing, Westobou Arts Center, & Marbury Village don't have much going on.

But the North Augusta town center, Saint Sebastian Park, Harrisburg Canal Village, Sand Bar Ferry Village, Augusta Canal Park, and Dyess Canal Village have signs of progress.

Emerydan
10
Points
Emerydan 10/15/10 - 01:16 pm
0
0
Man.. this was one expensive

Man.. this was one expensive PR stunt for the mayor right before the election.. great way to get people's minds off the rampant crime that he continues to ignore. The only thing about this PR stunt versus the one he had at Golden Harvest foodbanl 10 days ago is that this one cost all of us $500,000. I guess the mayor does not need any campaign contributions this time, when he can get the taxpayers to pay the tab for his campaign ads.

Augusta resident
1370
Points
Augusta resident 10/15/10 - 01:18 pm
0
0
The private developer got

The private developer got tired of the city changing their mind and stopped building until they could get their !@#$ together. Bass pro Shop came after the fact.

Augusta resident
1370
Points
Augusta resident 10/15/10 - 01:20 pm
0
0
And what's up with all the

And what's up with all the parks. All the ones I see are always empty.

countyman
23597
Points
countyman 10/15/10 - 02:33 pm
0
0
The parks at Pendleton King,

The parks at Pendleton King, Brookfield, Diamond Lakes, Blythe, Mcbean, etc are always usually full. The splash park on Highland Avenue is jamed packed during the summer months.

The new park surrounding the Judicial center will provide lush green open space near the CBD.. Greenspace looks great within a urban environment.

The new promenade section of the Augusta mall in 2007. The promenade took alot of the stores( Apple, PF Changs, Williams Sonoma, Sephora, etc) away from the Village at Riverwatch. After a period of time the Village at Riverwatch got the interest of Costco and Bass Pro.. They didn't get a chance to start construction before the recession hit.

Riverman1
121263
Points
Riverman1 10/15/10 - 04:15 pm
0
0
"He has called for the

"He has called for the organization of an Office of ASDA Implementation, which will be a fully staffed office to carry out the ideas of the plan."

That would be a great job. Get a call every few months from someone asking if anything on the plan was being built yet. Tell them, no, not yet and go back to watching Ophra.

Riverman1
121263
Points
Riverman1 10/15/10 - 04:18 pm
0
0
By the way, I know that Bass

By the way, I know that Bass Pro Shop is going to be a hit if it's ever built. It's in a great location in West August, right off I-20 and on the river.

Augusta resident
1370
Points
Augusta resident 10/15/10 - 04:32 pm
0
0
It'll be a huge hit, along

It'll be a huge hit, along with the rest of the Village but what's the hold up? Build it and they will come. By the way, put a crab shack with a deck on the canal. The canal was man-made without trees, so don't let that hold things up again.

omnomnom
3964
Points
omnomnom 10/15/10 - 07:48 pm
0
0
Oh yeah. Thats what we need.

Oh yeah. Thats what we need. Morons throwing trucked-in shrimp into the canal. Just throw a Bubba Gump up there for name recognition. Eww. Eww. Eww. Tacky tacky Tacky.

omnomnom
3964
Points
omnomnom 10/15/10 - 07:50 pm
0
0
"This is no the end of the

"This is no the end of the plan," Shields said. "It's the beginning. It's a starting point." Sounds like they'll be coming back for a heaping helping of Augusta/Richmond County taxpayer dollars. JOYNESS

flipa
2744
Points
flipa 10/15/10 - 08:39 pm
0
0
If transients who make money

If transients who make money in Augusta chipped in just a little each to the infrastructure Richmond county taxpayers pay for to provide them such a good living they can go back to our surrounding counties and live like kings, we could have all these new things AND the HIGHEST paid police in the area.

dani
13
Points
dani 10/16/10 - 03:45 am
0
0
If this is taken in small

If this is taken in small doses, it could be possible over a few years. Begin with the changes now taking place near the hospitals and build out from there.

Abby-noll
0
Points
Abby-noll 10/16/10 - 08:57 am
0
0
corgi: I wonder if anyone has

corgi: I wonder if anyone has considered how the furloughed teachers and municipal employees feel- on one hand, Augusta is saying "We're broke", on the other hand they unveil grandiose plans for redevelopment estimated to cost $1.1 billion.

Nope, they don't consider it. We're just supposed to go along with it and not say a peep.

countyman
23597
Points
countyman 10/16/10 - 12:17 pm
0
0
75% to 80% of the master plan

75% to 80% of the master plan is private money. The master plan is over a 20 year period.

If you don't live in RC and are against the plans.. The 20% to 25% of the public money won't affect your. Nor is anybody forcing you to work in RC. You can always try finding a job in a surrounding county.

Abby-noll
0
Points
Abby-noll 10/16/10 - 03:20 pm
0
0
I assume you're speaking to

I assume you're speaking to me, countyman. No, I'm not forced to work in RC. I just figured that I spent most of my time and money here I might as well work here also. Just because I live across the river doesn't mean that this does not affect me. The only shopping I do in North Augusta is my grocery shopping. My doctor's are in Augusta, too. I happen to like my job, I just don't think the furloughs are fair. Especially hitting everyone right at the holiday's when we need it the most. It isn't as if we're making 100k a year or anything. I don't know any of my fellow employees that are jumping for joy over the furlough days and my living in North Augusta has nothing to do with it. I personally wouldn't have minded giving up a vacation day, but for some reason that isn't an alternative. We MUST take a day off without pay. What's the difference, I wonder?

joebowles
104
Points
joebowles 10/17/10 - 10:24 am
0
0
Countyman, this master plan

Countyman, this master plan was funded 100% by the Augusta Taxpayers.......There was NO private money!!!

Emerydan
10
Points
Emerydan 10/17/10 - 01:51 pm
0
0
We are furloughing police and

We are furloughing police and other workers because the city is short $500,000.. well here is where that money went folks. I could have drawn them a bunch of fancy pictures for free.

countyman
23597
Points
countyman 10/17/10 - 05:19 pm
0
0
Joe Bowles... I mean't the

Joe Bowles... I mean't the $1.1 billion figure will be 75% to 80% private investment...

I know the taxpayers funded the initial cost of the master plan..

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