The City Of Brookhaven, Georgia held the historic groundbreaking for Phase I of the Peachtree Creek Greenway on December 12, 2018. The Peachtree Creek Greenway will stretch 1.27 miles from North Druid Hills Road to Briarwood Road to include a series of paved multi-purpose trails and promenade trails. When Phase I and II are complete, the Brookhaven segment of the PCG will be poised to connect southward to PATH400, the South Fork Conservancy Trails and the Atlanta Beltline. Phase III will then position connectivity northward beyond Brookhaven to Mercer University in unincorporated DeKalb County. When fully built, the Peachtree Creek Greenway will stretch a full 12.3 miles in length.
In partnership with City Officials Chris Balch drafted legislation in 2017 to increase the City’s hotel/motel tax in order to create an income stream to fund the construction of the Peachtree Creek Greenway. In 2018 Chris drafted legislation for consideration by the Georgia Legislature as the next step in the creation of the Greenway to establish a public facilities authority that would allow the city to pledge the hotel/motel tax revenues as an income stream for repayment of borrowed funds, allowing the immediate construction of the first phase of the Greenway.
After helping the Council craft and pass the legislative acts necessary to authorize the Facility Authority to borrow against the Hotel/Motel revenue stream, Chris led the bond validation against citizen opposition and secured the funding mechanism, all without direct cost to Brookhaven citizens. In addition, he balanced the competing funding mechanisms between SPLOST, Hotel/Motel Bond proceeds, and Community Investment Agreement funding sources to ensure that appropriate funds were used where they were lawful. He also crafted contracts and other documentation for land acquisition along the 1.5 mile trail and prepared project specific contracts for the special conditions of construction of this first-of-its-kind project in Brookhaven.