Editor’s Note: 2022 certainly promises to be another news-filled year, from a continued fight against COVID-19 to a debate over whether Buckhead should break off from Atlanta. Reporter Newspapers surveyed local leaders to hear what they think will be the biggest issues in the next 12 months. 

John Ernst, Brookhaven Mayor

Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst.

I’m looking forward to another year of progress in 2022 for Brookhaven. As always, the thing that affects most people more than anything else is traffic. We have made significant headway with recommendations from the Top End I-285 Transit collaborative with all of the cities and CIDs to work with the GDOT on the critical transit alternatives needed on the perimeter between Smyrna and Tucker. Of course, we’ll also be back at work paving our roads, making them some of the best in the state, leveraging SPLOST funds that were approved by voters in 2018.

Speaking of SPLOST, Brookhaven’s new Public Safety Building, housing our police and Municipal Court, should be open for business this year. Also, design work will be underway for Phases II and III of the Peachtree Creek Greenway, which extends our “model mile” literally and figuratively, into a model for transit alternatives for the region.

Construction on Parks improvement projects will also be in high gear in 2022, with Lynwood Park taking center stage. Beginning in January, we’ll be working on all Lynwood Park projects at once, which will be an epic transformation in less than a year – a relatively short period of time for work of this magnitude. 

We’ll continue to keep our eyes open for the latest developments in the worldwide COVID pandemic, and make any changes necessary to ensure the health and safety of our residents and our workforce. Having said that, with multiple vaccines readily available and changes in the way we all go about our daily routines, I believe 2022 will usher in an era of normalcy which I think all of us are looking forward to.

Once of the fun things we’ll be bringing back is our annual Brookhaven Cherry Blossom Festival, back at Blackburn Park on March 26 and 27, 2022. More information about the activities and performances will be announced shortly, but I personally guarantee it will be a blast.

Throughout 2022 and over the next few years, there will be more positive transformations throughout Brookhaven. I want to thank all of our residents for their input and their understanding and patience as we fulfill our responsibility to make capital improvements and maintain our infrastructure which will pay dividends for generations to come.

John Ernst is the mayor of Brookhaven.