Susannah Macmillan is one of nine candidates running for four available seats on the Brentwood City Commission. Community Impact Newspaper sent each candidate a list of questions. The answers below are edited for publication style.
This article is part of Brentwood municipal election coverage and does not constitute an endorsement of the candidate. Election day is May 7.
Experience: Master’s degree in industrial organizational psychology, previous Associate Director of Human Resources, heavily involved in Williamson County Schools, wife, mother of three school-aged children. Currently attending Brentwood’s Citizen Police Academy.
Why did you decide to run for the City Commission?
Brentwood is a charming and special city to call home. I am passionate about perpetuating the unique qualities and characteristics that make our city extraordinary. Our 1-acre density, our amazing police and fire departments, the vast parks and green spaces, and our exemplary schools all make Brentwood an incredible place to live, and I want to maintain and nurture these unique qualities for our future.
In your opinion, what is the biggest issue facing Brentwood, and how do you plan to address it on the City Commission?
Brentwood has approximately 7,000 acres of remaining buildable land, and this is projected to add an additional 25,000 people to our current population. I would like to see it developed in a responsible manner to manage the capacity of our infrastructure (sewer, roads and schools). I believe in maintaining our one home per acre standard. This will allow us to complete our build-out in a responsible manner.
How will you balance density concerns with Brentwood’s rapid growth?
Brentwood is growing at a responsible pace, but we are an island that is surrounded by hypergrowth. For example, Brentwood averages around 200 building permits per year, while Franklin is around 1,500. As a city, we should maintain our current zoning plans to ensure our growth does not overwhelm our infrastructure.
Anything else you would like the community to know?
Brentwood has done a great job of planning for parks and green space. In fact, according to the 2016 NRPA (National Recreation and Park Association) Field Report, in terms of acreage per resident nationally and compared to Franklin:
Brentwood: 24 acres per 1,000 residents
Franklin: 10 acres per 1,000 residents
National average: 6 acres per 1,000 residents
Brentwood has four times the national average of acres per 1,000 residents, and it is important that we strive to maintain this very unique asset as we approach the build-out of our city and look for opportunities for connectivity.