The city of Adairsville is experiencing some growing pains, however City Manager Pam Madison is confident that the end result will be a much better community for residents, retailers and industry.
One of her biggest challenges is managing the growth and changes, she told Bartow County business leaders “while keeping our hometown, small town, Adairsville feel.”
The city has witnessed a 93% increase in new home construction permits inside the city limits compared to last year — with two months left on the calendar. The city’s utility services, gas, water and sewer also have a wide reach outside of the actual city limits and are experiencing growth as well.
The city has issued at least 40 more business licenses when compared to last year.
“We are definitely growing,” Madison said. “Because we are growing, we understand that we have to keep our infrastructure growing to meet our current and future needs.”
The city just completed a major upgrade at its Lewis Spring raw water intake plant and just broke ground on a project to double the size and capacity of its wastewater treatment plant. That plant is expected to fall under a consent order with the Georgia Environmental Protection Division to get into compliance with all of its permits.
Looking to the future, Madison said a lot of people in the community have expressed an interest in additional commercial development.
“More restaurants or gathering places, things for kids to do, just making sure we have a good mix of commercial and industrial,” she said.
The city has engaged NextSite to assist with economic development leads and transportation studies associated with a couple of major industrial projects that are on the drawing board.
At this point, those studies are indicating a need for more traffic signals and perhaps the widening of U.S. 41 going north toward Calhoun.
On top of that, the city has a million square feet of industrial construction in the pipeline and they’ve used funds to significantly expand the network of sidewalks.
Adairsville is focused on amenities for residents, Madison said. For example, the city has opened Veterans Memorial Park with picnic pavilions, a walking trail, a splash pad and a playground.
The downtown area is also up for revitalization.
“It’s not always pretty but the end result is going to be fabulous,” Madison said.
The city has partnered with its Downtown Development Authority and the Bartow Arts Alliance to bring sculptures and a photo fence to the downtown area. An artist reception will be held Nov. 16, with the specific time and location to be announced later.