The News: What do you see as the biggest issues facing Oxford? Besaw: I personally do not see any “issues with Oxford,” but I do see “opportunities and room for expansion” such as healthy living lifestyle, outdoor recreation, parks, bike trails, plenty of areas to grow and create a well-balanced shopping, dining, light entertainment and attractions. The News: What skills will (do) you bring to the council to help address those issues?
Besaw: What I can bring to the council is to help with progression of our unique little city. For example, I am very helpful with development growth ideas, trail and park design. I am already interactive with the college and community. A member of Newton Trails, The Yellow River Trail and donate a generous raffle prize from my business to Piedmont Newton Hospital every year. With experience as a small business owner I would be interested in opening a bicycle repair/
small diner for the area. Overall, I want to help Oxford become a quaint destination to explore historic homes and landmarks. The News: With the continued expansion of the Emory University footprint and the proposed downtown development, what can be done to maintain the quality of life that citizens have come to expect in Oxford?
Besaw: I believe whole-heartedly that Emory University has Oxford in its best interest. And will be only making positive forward movement for their students, staff and their neighbors, us the citizens of Oxford.
As far as downtown development, I believe that a small shopping area, perhaps a small fresh vegetable “farm to table,” called “Farming-hood” a neighborhood local market. Grayson has a wonderful working example of one. We can adopt and look at several different working structures from other towns and cities.
Any type of trending cloth- ing for regular Newton County schools and of course the college kids. Any area for someone to enjoy a cup of coffee and free Wi-Fi, a “Common Ground coffee shop,” if you will, would help generate revenue for the city and help Oxford start towards what they strive to become. I would like to propose a motion to grant money to homes that are staples to our community to help revitalize the structures in our town whether they are private or city owned, given within a certain age of the home for preservation.
I honestly do not think that the quality of life would change much at all for the current citizens of Oxford aside from convenience and keeping our money within our own city. The News: Do you think greenspace or parking should be a priority for the Oxford City Council? Besaw: I believe that a greenspace and parking is a
a must if the city chooses to move forward with the goals set at hand. Both are obtainable. The News: Where do you see the City of Oxford in four years? Besaw: Four years from now, hopefully Oxford will have some type of community area, a gath- ering place which people can mingle and get to know their neighbors. Possibly, lighten up on the strict zoning laws to give more opportunity for entrepreneurship. The News: How can voters contact you if they have additional questions? Besaw: Mike Besaw, 1020 Emory Street Oxford Georgia 30054 404-606-8788 Squarebikes@gmail.com