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Gwinnett celebrates official opening of its third project in seven days


Gwinnett County officials and history buffs celebrated the opening of the historic Isaac Adair House at the third ribbon cutting for a SPLOST-funded project in a week.

The Isaac Adair House, located next to the Female Seminary in Lawrenceville, has benefitted from $1.055 million in improvements, including ADA accessibility to both structures, a restroom building, storage for programming supplies, landscaping and bus parking. The renovations to the site will create better access to the buildings and promote greater use for school field trips, community meetings and events.

“Having these two restored, historic buildings together on one improved site is yet another SPLOST-funded amenity that makes Gwinnett County such a great place to live,” said Board of Commissioners Chairman Charlotte Nash said.

She recounted the history of the 190-year-old building, one of Gwinnett’s oldest. Isaac Adair, a farmer and a surveyor, settled in Gwinnett in 1824 and lived in the area for 20 years before moving to Texas during the Civil War. He died on his way back to Gwinnett in 1866.

His house had half a dozen other owners, most notably Marvin and Phyllis Hughes, who painstakingly restored it and had it listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The County acquired the historic structure and relocated it out of the path of the planned Sugarloaf Parkway extension in 2008 to its current location.

She said the Female Seminary opened in 1838 at a time when most colleges did not admit women. It burned in the early 1850s, was rebuilt, and in 1888 was converted to a meeting house.

District 2 Commissioner Lynette Howard said the site will continue the tradition of educating young people.

“Having been an educator, I know the demand for opportunities to enhance education related to science, technology, engineering, art and math,” Howard said. “This site provides a

unique opportunity to teach history and incorporate the creative engineering and technology concepts of the 1800s embedded in the original construction of these buildings. The living history programs implemented at this site will help preserve the lifestyle of frontier Gwinnett and bring history to life for our students.”

District Commissioner 4 John Heard, an architect, said the Isaac Adair House and the Female Seminary signified a transition in the history of Gwinnett County.

“The architecture and the grandeur of those two buildings illustrate a moment in our County’s history when the citizens felt their young community had changed from a rough, frontier outpost to something a little more settled and refined,” Heard said. “Projects like these remind us how fortunate we are to live in a community that appreciates and celebrates its past. They also reflect our commitment to constantly improving our quality of life, which makes Gwinnett County a great place to live and do business.”

The Isaac Adair House celebration was the third event in the past week to recognize and officially open new recreational projects.

On July 11, supporters of sports, playtime and recreation joined County officials for back-to-back ribbon cuttings to mark the completion of a new gymnasium at George Pierce Park and a playground and other improvements at McDaniel Farm Park.

The new George Pierce Park gymnasium has a full-sized basketball court and elevated indoor track. The basketball court has two overlay courts for volleyball and badminton. The project was funded with $3.2 million in 2009 SPLOST revenue.

District 1 Commissioner Jace Brooks said the new gym fills a need in the community. “The Suwanee area has an active and diverse population that will certainly take advantage of all that this new gym has to offer,” he said.

The 134-acre McDaniel Farm Park received $3.4 million in upgrades for a new northeast entrance, an open play area, a picnic pavilion, a farm-themed playground, a dog park, trail extension, restrooms, landscaping and parking.

 

Photos from these events are available at www.flickr.com/photos/gwinnettcounty/albums. 

To view video of the ribbon cutting at Isaac Adair House, click here.

To view video of the ribbon cutting at McDaniel Farm Park, click here.

To view video of the ribbon cutting at George Pierce Park, click here.

For the Isaac Adair House By-the-Numbers flyer, click here.

For the McDaniel Farm Park By-the-Numbers flyer, click here.

For the George Pierce Park By-the-Numbers flyer, click here.