The potential of downtown Brunswick is something many people feel very passionate about, but passion can only take you so far. Enthusiasm becomes greatness when it leads to results. Many developers and stakeholders are doing just that in the city’s commercial hub.
The latest sign of downtown Brunswick’s rejuvenation happened at one of downtown’s mainstay events — First Friday. At the First Friday event for April last week, Brad Piazza showed off the work put in to turn the former Bijou Theatre into Port City Park. Piazza said renovations took nine months to turn the former theater space into a venue for public, semi-private and corporate events.
Piazza’s investment in downtown Brunswick goes beyond the park. He is also working to turn the former Leotis building into Port City Lofts, which will bring much-needed housing options to the area.
Other developers are also putting their money into making downtown Brunswick better. Stephen Prince and his daughter, Courtney, are turning the former Ford building into business and residential spaces. Stephen Prince also owns the old SunTrust Bank building and told The News earlier this year he has a similar plan for that building. Tommy McGraw purchased the Kress building in 2019 and plans to renovate the second floor and transform it into condos. Jay Jenkins is also bringing more housing to downtown Brunswick.
Those are just a few of the projects that are going on to help bring downtown Brunswick back to prominence.
We tip our hat to all of the business men and women, investors and stakeholders who see the area’s bright future and are willing to invest to help make it happen.
The biggest area of need to make the downtown area thrive is more housing options. It’s a simple equation, but more people means more businesses in downtown to serve their needs. Those businesses in turn will help bring more people downtown, and the cycle will keep going.
There is still a card that hasn’t been played yet that could ultimately give downtown Brunswick a winning hand. The former Oglethorpe block is a massive area that could be used for housing, business space and green space. If it is properly developed, it could be the last piece to the puzzle of returning downtown Brunswick to its former glory.
We believe the future for downtown Brunswick is still very bright. The pandemic has, thankfully, not diminished that feeling.
Downtown Brunswick is thriving and on a good path. We hope nothing happens to impede that progress.