FB Fury over City Proposed Gateway Markers | Staff back to ‘Drawing Board’

gateway Markers Johns Creek

Mayor Bodker sets the agenda, and releases it late Thursday.

This gives the public little time to review numerous documents.

The public deserves at least 1 week review what is to be voted on. ​

An agenda item popped up for Monday night to spend $40K of (hotel-motel tax) with Urban Catalyst Lab to design the concept of Two “Gateway markers” State Bridge Rd.

We quickly looked up the artist and posted some of the work on our FB page. Fury and outrage over what was proposed and with no notice, no information or input. 

According to staff documents “The CVB Board continues to recommend allocating the full balance of collected funds (budgeted at $114,647). ” This would be for the installation. 

gateway markers proposal

What happen Last Night...

The entire gateway marker discussion was tabled with the request by Council that The City Manager come up with a better process. 

As the City Council had to spend the $40K on something…

5 of the 7 Council voted to allocate the $40K toward the greenway trail initiative. 

Councilman Lenny Zaprowski & Mayor Bodker were the No Votes. 

Mayor Bodker had this to say about the debacle and his desire for future gateway markers and public art for Johns Creek…

Source: City of Johns Creek & Urban Catalyst Lab.

Note to the Artist

We do want to say this about the art and artist. Everything has a purpose and place. Although the general consensus is “Urban Catalyst Lab” is not right fit for Gateway Marker signage for Johns Creek, that doesn’t mean your art doesn’t have a place or space somewhere else in the community. We value your contributions as a member of society. 

6 thoughts on “FB Fury over City Proposed Gateway Markers | Staff back to ‘Drawing Board’”

  1. Why do Bodker and his buddy Zaprowski think we’re an urban community? We’re not. Bodker has been on a power trip since 2006 that is antithetical with why we wanted to incorporate.

  2. Hello Bodker! We are not an urban community and voted for incorporating to keep urbanism out of our area. Your power trip is destroying what the citizens wanted with incorporation. Zaprowski – you’re no better. Term limits!

  3. As a resident of Johns Creek since its inception and Chair of the Johns Creek Convention and Visitors Bureau, I am beyond disappointed at the misinformation represented in this post. The gateway signage discussion ultimately initiated from an expert study performed in the last two years and paid for by the JC Convention and Visitors Bureau (JCCVB). The JCCVB budget derives from hotel/motel tax governed by Georgia State Law and collected by the City of Johns Creek specifically to promote the city to visitors (business and leisure). These funds are mandated by law to pass to the Convention and Visitors Bureau.

    A portion of those funds collected (additional funds due to the early payoff of the World Congress Center) are allocated by Georgia State Law as tourism product development funds. While the operating budget of the JCCVB is solely managed by the JC CVB Board of Directors (JCCVB is a separate legal entity), the tourism product development funds require strategic recommendations to the JC City Council for final approval.

    The gateway signage was one of the fundamental voids identified in the CVB’s recent study. The JC CVB Board of Directors included them in the strategic planning to fill the void starting with only two primary gateways into Johns Creek.

    The collaborative process of determining a design has not even begun. The community will be a part of that unique approach in determining what design actually represents the City of Johns Creek. Bringing the community together to be a part of this design process is one of the most exciting opportunities. William Massey is one of the few sculpture artists that insists on this approach with all of his community art. His art reflects exactly what the community told him they wanted and this is why it is all different. So the art portrayed above in this post is a representation of what each community requested of him.

    William already has insight into Johns Creek since he helped facilitate the recent Johns Creek tunnel project near McGinnis Ferry. He was instrumental in serving as a liaison to the international artist, Hanif Kureshi, as he listened to the Johns Creek art and history community in determining what the tunnel should represent. Urban Catalyst is an organization that works with cities around the globe on utilizing representative art. Urban Catalyst facilitated the tunnel project as well with the JC CVB and were key in assisting to identify Kureshi. William Massey utilizes the Urban Catalyst team as a facilitator for the community engagement component of his approach since they understand his philosophy and appreciation for full community collaboration on art.

    The same broader collaborative process will be followed on the gateway signage. There are no designs to show because designs come at the end of the process once William has an opportunity to listen to the community. He will then come back with several designs based on what he has heard and let the community come together to review and provide feedback. Only after a design has been determined will he actually execute on the development of the functional branded gateway signage. The Johns Creek branding will be incorporated in the functional signage for consistency. I appreciate the opportunity to share factual information on this exciting project to be funded through the JC CVB if fully approved. Bringing the community together on this project allows us an opportunity to break down silos and land on a design that represents our extraordinary city. Lynda Lee Smith, Chair, Johns Creek Convention and Visitors Bureau

  4. Paying a firm $40,000 just to gather ‘ideas’ from the community seems excessive. I don’t happen to like the examples of the artists work. When evaluating the hiring of an artist one usually reviews their portfolio. How many people in the community were involved in choosing this particular artist? What others were considered? Who made the final decision of Mr. Massey. Why was the agenda item so last minute?

    Seems there is a LOT of information that is not being shared on the subject.