This is "Actual Factual Gwinnett," a regular column in which Tyler Estep answers reader questions about Gwinnett happenings and history. Read previous editions — like this one confirming the imminent arrival of a massive bowling and laser tag venue — by clicking the hyperlinks at the bottom of this column, where you'll also find information for submitting your own questions. Enjoy!
What'll ya have, Gwi...err...Barrow?
Reader B.R. Bradberry writes: "We in Dacula have heard (for at least the last two years) that a Varsity restaurant is to be built at Ga. highways 316 and 81 in Barrow County. Any truth to this rumor?"
Fabulous question, B.R. The answer? Maybe!
OK...so...what? Well, waaaay back in January 2015, the Gwinnett Daily Post reported that a Varsity Jr. was coming to The Gateway at University Parkway, a budding shopping center at the intersection you mentioned (across Ga. 316 from another big retail center known as Barrow Crossing and, if you're keeping score, just outside Gwinnett lines).
In February, a story from esteemed AJC colleague Matt Kempner also suggested as much (vaguely, at least).
All that said, not much has happened, development-wise — so I reached out to the Varsity and to the shopping center.
Varsity spokesman John Browne said this (via email): "We do not have anything to report about our future growth plans at this time."
Wayne Bartlett of Progressive Realty LLC, which handles leasing at The Gateway at University Parkway, said this (also via email): "They've told us they still plan to build at The Gateway. They have purchased the land and signage at the project. But, I do not know a timeline."
The shopping center also posted this on Facebook in March:
Here's what's happening at The Gateway:
And Progressive still has the Varsity on its map of The Gateway:
So, B.R., while officials are mostly mum and a possible timeline is sufficiently vague, there seems to be a glimmering grease spot of hope, and that long-desired chili dog may be attainable soon.
I, Tyler Estep, am a staff writer with the AJC and a Gwinnett County native. To submit “Actual Factual Gwinnett” questions, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, @ByTylerEstep on Twitter or via the form below.
About the Author