It hasn't been open nine months, but the Sawnee Mountain Preserve Visitor Center has already earned an award.
The Georgia Urban Forest Council recently honored the Forsyth County Parks and Recreation Department with an Outstanding New Development -- Grand Award.
The center, which was the second phase of the county's preserve project, debuted in March at 4075 Spot Road.
The council promotes the protection of Georgia's trees and rewards individuals, counties and organizations that preserve and plant trees in their communities.
The $2.4 million center was paid for with impact fees, or charges on new development.
It has a variety of natural features, including a native plant garden and waterfall, a tree house and classroom beneath a wooden canopy.
The site also incorporates natural detention areas and tree plantings, as well as parking spots paved with pervious surfaces in an effort to maintain the preserve's natural feel.
The preserve received the council's "Most Outstanding Greenspace Plan" award for 2005.
For more information about the center, contact (770) 781-2217.