Buford is a city in Gwinnett and Hall counties in the U.S. state of Georgia. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 12,225. Most of the city is in Gwinnett County, which is part of the Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta Metropolitan Statistical Area. The portions of the city in Hall County are not part of Atlanta’s metropolitan statistical area, but are part of Atlanta’s larger Combined Statistical Area, which includes Hall County. The recorded history of Buford began in early 19th century. The area that is now Buford was originally Cherokee territory and despite the treaty in 1817 that ceded the territory to the United States and Gwinnett County’s legislative establishment in 1818, the area was still largely inhabited by Cherokee until the 1830s. The first non-Native American moved to the Buford area in the late 1820s or early 1830s, although the Buford area was not largely inhabited by non-Native Americans until the 1860s.
Buford, as with the rest of Gwinnett County, has a sales tax of 6%, which is a combination of the 4% state sales tax and a 2% local tax. In 2008, CNN Money ranked Buford as number 3 in its annual “100 best places to live and start a business” list. According to the U.S. Census’s American Community Survey 2007-2011 5-year estimate, around 65% of Buford’s population that are 16 years or older are in the labor force. Of these, around 59% are employed, and 6% are unemployed. The power tool manufacturer Makita operates a factory in Buford with 400 employees. The North American division of Takeuchi Manufacturing was located in Buford from 1999 until 2006, when the company moved to a larger facility in Pendergrass, Georgia.
Buford has several walking trails throughout the city; over 7 miles (11 km) of trails are accessible from both the Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center and the Mall of Georgia as well as walking trails at Bogan and Buford Dam parks. Bogan Park also has several baseball fields and playgrounds as well as the Bogan Park Community Center and Family Aquatics Center. Buford Dam Park is next to Lake Lanier and has areas for swimming and other recreational activities. In addition to the parks run by Gwinnett County there are five city parks located throughout Buford, and a community center, which was completed in early 2012. The Mall of Georgia is the largest mall in Georgia and the 36th largest in the United States, with over 200 stores and a 20 Regal Cinema and IMAX Theater. While outside the official Buford city limits, the mall uses Buford as its mailing address.