Through the city’s Comprehensive Plan, feedback from residents helps establish the overall priorities for the town. Citizens reveal a desire for a thriving downtown, transportation connectivity, more pedestrian-friendly developments, a better grocery store, and mixed-use developments. They are addressing citizen concerns for enhanced quality of life and more sustainable results informed by comprehensive planning.
The city of Fairburn worked with the metropolitan planning organization, the Atlanta Regional Com-mission (ARC), to develop a creative placemaking strategy in 2017. The goal was to focus economic de-velopment approaches on arts and entertainment as catalysts for activating and enhancing public space. Historically, developments and events were identified in isolation. However, with the implementation of Fairburn’s Creative Placemaking Strategy, there is a shift from ad-hoc events and actions to a holistic approach to incorporate a ‘competitive identity’.
A place settled as early as 1830, the town was founded as Cartersville in 1833 and thrived as a banking town located along the CSX railway, changing its name one year later to Berryville. In 1854, the Georgia State Legislature enacted a town charter named Fairburn, and by 1925 Fairburn changed its status from a “town” to a “city.” Since its founding, Fairburn has experienced tremendous growth. For many, the attraction is the small-town charm. According to Fairburn’s Mayor, Elizabeth Carr-Hurst, “Fairburn is a place that has something for everyone.
Fairburn’s heart of downtown showcases 20 commercial buildings, the Campbell County Courthouse, and two train depots. Fairburn is looking to the future with a vibrant downtown courtyard and stage for concerts, special events, annual Farmer’s Market, and numerous opportunities for small businesses. Restaurants like award-winning Slider’s Burger Joint, Armando’s Mexican food, Casablanca’s Southern cuisine, and Oz Pizza are among the downtown varieties that offer guests a relaxed atmosphere and exceptional food.
Cochran Mill Brewing Company’s craft beer, casual setting, and open-food policy (you can bring your own food) allows guests of all ages to enjoy. Since their soft opening in late March 2020, they have been on the forefront in taking COVID-19 precautions such as 90% percent of the brewery is open-air seating, indoor social distancing policy, on line ordering, and curbside service promote customer safety and trust. Whether you’re tasting a Blonde Moment, a light bodied ale with subtle aroma that is reminiscent of a walk along the hot springs enjoying a summer afternoon, or a more traditional Scottish ale made in the traditional style, Cochran Mill Brewing Company has the flavor to fit your fancy. Other popular blends include English IPA, Snow Swan Saison, Professor Ted’s Irish Red, Muller Hund Molasses Porter, and the newest addition Depot Street Amber Ale.
Moving Forward with Vision
Awarded a grant by the Livable Cities Initiative Program, Fairburn has developed strategies to link residents to area shopping, arts and entertainment, and walkable trails and vistas. Fairburn’s downtown Historic Commercial District is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It offers visitors and residents local entertainment, access to craft beer at Cochran Mill Brewhouse, classical theatrical plays at historic Southside Theatre Guild, and various restaurants and shops like Cigar Studio Lounge, an authorized Davidoff distributor, where celebrities such as Academy Award winners Jamie Foxx and Louis Gossett Jr. visit while in town-drawing visitors from around the country.
The city of Fairburn has actively engaged in development opportunities to increase the city’s amenities with investments in infrastructure and community engagement. Some of the projects include:
- Broad Street Streetscape Project
- 1-85@ State Route 74/ Senoia Road Interchange Project
- Fairburn Festival- proposed 7,700 square foot multi-tenant commercial development located along Hwy 74/Senoia Road at the Intersection of Meadow Glen Parkway, which is currently underway.
- Fern Dale Project-Virlyn B. Smith Road adjacent to the Renaissance Festival Property (171-lot subdivision)
- Livable Cities Initiative (LCI) Downtown Development Study Update • Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) Community Assistance Program/ Fairburn Community Garden Plan -Assists with addressing challenges of food insecurity, food deserts, and equity in health and wellness living.
- Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) Community Assistance Program/ Fairburn Community Garden Plan -Assists with addressing challenges of food insecurity, food deserts, and equity in health and wellness living.
- Creative Placemaking -Activation of downtown to enhance character spaces, encourage public art, and catalytic projects (includes Streetscape Project, Southside Theatre Guild enhancements, and Underpass)
Fairburn is a city with places to go, see and do in the ATL, a city Situated to Succeed.
By Kristel Rodriguez Peacock