BOC approves Gaithers plan
A master plan for the development of Gaithers Plantation calls for more festivals at the site, a new museum and a full-time site director.
Planning consultants with Jordan, Jones & Goulding presented their master plan for the development of Gaithers, over a period of years, to the Newton County Board of Commissioners at its Tuesday night meeting.
Charlotte Webber, a consultant with the firm, listed a number of events that could take place at Gaithers once the site is properly developed such as folklore demonstrations, a mystery dinner theater, arts and crafts festivals, nature walks and Christmas candlelight tours.
The plan recommends that a 5,000 square foot museum, storing historic farm equipment, be built on site. The plan further recommends the entrance to Gaithers be shifted slightly to the north to bring visitors in through the Crossroads Village.
Expanded wildflower fields, hiking trails and the planting of crops which would have historically been grown on the plantation are also recommended in the plan.
The cost of fully implementing the Gaithers Master Plan is estimated to be $3 million. Andrea Grecko, a landscape architect with JJ&G, recommended the county pursue 501(c)3 status for the Friends of Gaithers to allow the organization to apply for grants in the development of the former plantation.
In other BOC news:
The BOC renewed its contract for another year with Oconee Metal Recovery for the sale of scrap metal collected at county recycling centers and at the Lower River Road Landfill. • Oconee Metal will pay $.06 per pound. The price is an increase from the $.03 per pound Oconee previously paid to the county. The increase in price is the result of rising demand worldwide for scrap metal.
Envirowaste Equipment Inc.’s low bid of $27,268 was accepted by the board for the replacement of four tarp systems for the roll-off trucks at the landfill.
The board approved a $36,524 contract with Government Systems Inc. for new tax appraisal software and the installation and training hours to operate the new software.