There is a strong belief among elected officials and business leaders that Brunswick’s waterfront is prime for development to help spur the ongoing renaissance downtown.
The question is how much potential?
Brunswick Mayor Cornell Harvey said he is supportive of a proposed study that would be funded jointly by the city and county through an upcoming SPLOST fund that is expected to be on the ballot in March.
“I’d like the study to look at all of the downtown waterfront,” he said.
While the city doesn’t own a lot of the waterfront property other than Mary Ross Waterfront Park and some tracts that are rented to businesses, Harvey said the study could make recommendations that would enable the city and county to have a strong voice in how the waterfront is developed.
“If you establish as waterfront district, you can put in certain guidelines for development,” he said. “I would like for that to be.”
The creation of a waterfront district could also generate more interest by developers because they could be eligible for tax credits that are typically offered in special districts, Harvey said.
Glynn County commissioners also deserve credit for agreeing to help fund the study through SPLOST funds, Harvey said.
“I think this year you will see a spirit of cooperation,” he said. “It will benefit both the city and the county.”
Perhaps the person with the most at stake by a study is Michael Torras, manager of the Brunswick Landing Marina, which stretches nearly a half mile along the city’s waterfront.
Torras said he supports a study that could help set the parameters for the best and most acceptable way to develop the waterfront.
“We’d love to see what Brunswick could do with the waterfront,” he said. “A study would be a good idea.”