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Forsyth Schools, Cumming reach “win-win” agreement over city center parking
Forsyth County Schools

Forsyth County School officials say they have reached a “win-win” agreement with the city of Cumming that will give Forsyth Central High School and the developing Cumming City Center 321 parking spaces for mutual use.

At Tuesday’s Forsyth County Board of Education meeting, board members unanimously approved an intergovernmental agreement that will cede 11.1 acres of land directly behind the Forsyth Central High School stadium to the city of Cumming, in exchange for weekday exclusive access to a 321-space parking lot that the city will develop there.

“The arrangement is that the city will build and develop that parking lot, that will serve our children Monday through Friday from [7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.] every afternoon,” said Tim Amerson, director of planning for Forsyth County Schools. “And the school will be able to reserve that parking lot for football games, extracurricular [activities] such as battle of the bands days and those type programs.”

Amerson said that the city will be responsible for site development and construction of the parking area, and together they have worked out a design that will route traffic up to the school stadium’s east ticket booth gate.

After voting to approve, board members voiced their support of the project, stating that they could have maintained ownership of the tract for future development, but due to the land’s challenging topography this is likely the best use of the property.

"Very nice to have more parking for our high school students," Board Chair Kristin Morrissey said.

"I think it’s good to note that this is a win-win for everybody,” added board member Wes McCall, who represents District 1 where the project is located. “We didn't have any plans for those acres."

On Wednesday, Cumming Mayor Troy Brumbalow said that he was pleased with the arrangement, stating that it was a pleasure to work with the school system on a mutually beneficial project.

The city center will be located on Canton Highway and will abut Forsyth Central High School on a 75-acre plot of land. The development will feature an amphitheater, walking trails, park, space for businesses and a lake with a fountain.

Previously, Brumbalow told the Forsyth County News that the city plans to have stores open at the city center by August 2021.