9-29-16 Brookhaven Reporter

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SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12, 2017 • VOL. 9 — NO. 20


Brookhaven Reporter



► Kroger gets council OK to open bar PAGE 13 ► City probes incorrect apartment inspection notices PAGE 22

Artists splash Buford Highway


Emory joins Greenway supporters BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

Emory Healthcare jumped on the Peachtree Creek Greenway bandwagon as the presenting sponsor for a recent fundraiser that attracted dozens of supporters who sipped wine and snacked on hors d’œuvres on a recent sunny Sunday afternoon. The fundraiser, held at the Urban Art Collective in Chamblee, featured speeches by Brookhaven City Councilmember Joe Gebbia, Chamblee Mayor Eric Clarkson, DeKalb County Commissioner Nancy JestSee EMORY on page 14


Dianna Settles worked with immigrant students at Cross Keys High School as part of the Living Walls public art conference to create her mural in Northeast Plaza that she hopes serves as a ‘beacon of beauty and resilience’ to young women of color. See story, page 12 ►

EXCEPTIONAL EDUCATOR From math class to ‘Jeopardy!’ studio

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GDOT proposes major changes to Peachtree Road BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net State transportation officials plan major changes for a segment of Peachtree Road in Brookhaven. Their proposals include narrowing lanes, adding a multi-use path and raising a median to create a boulevard feel along the 1.38-mile stretch of Peachtree Road between North Druid Hills Road and Ashford-Dunwoody Road. The changes, unveiled recently by the Georgia Department of Transportation, stem from the Brookhaven-Peachtree Livable Centers Initiative plan, which was developed more than a decade ago through the See GDOT on page 15

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City relocates ‘comfort women’ memorial to Blackburn Park BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

The city of Brookhaven on Sept. 19 relocated the controversial “comfort women” memorial statue to Blackburn Park, nearly three months after it was unveiled in an area the city calls Blackburn Park II. The relocation of the statue to Blackburn Park, located at 3493 AshfordDunwoody Road, followed threats of lawsuits by Blackburn Park II neighbors over lack of input in the memorial’s placement. City officials had already decided to move the memorial before its June 30 unveiling, though officials at the ceremony made no mention of the move and declined to comment at the time. Joint press releases on July 5 from the city and the Atlanta Comfort Women Memorial Task Force, which commissioned the statue, say the move was made because the memorial deserved a more prominent and accessible place. The releases did not mention the threatened lawsuit. The releases also said the smaller Blackburn Park II has received increased traffic and visitors since the memorial’s installation. The statue, depicting a girl seated next to an empty chair, is intended to honor the so-called comfort women who were sexually trafficked by the Japanese military during World War II. It is identical to several similar statues installed around the world as part of a cultural and political dispute between South Korea and Japan over “comfort women” history and responsibility. At Brookhaven City Council meetings after the unveiling, several people have spoken against the statue being lo-

The “comfort women” memorial statue is now located near the Blackburn Park parking lot, just off a sidewalk.

cated in Brookhaven. Stephen Haverfield, special program coordinator at the Japan-America Society of Georgia in Buckhead, which is near the Brookhaven border, said during the Aug. 8 meeting that placing the statue in Blackburn Park, where the city holds its annual Cherry Blossom

Festival, could harm Japanese relations. “It’s divisive,” Haverfield said of the statue. “This replica does not need to be the centerpiece of future Cherry Blossom Festivals.” Haverfield also said the “comfort women” memorial in Brookhaven is a replica of the original statue that is locat-


ed in South Korea across the street from the Japanese Embassy where, he said, anti-Japanese protesters appear every week. The memorial drew an enthusiastic, applauding crowd of over 100 at its unveiling. –John Ruch contributed

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Community Briefs AL L IA N C E TH EATRE P L AY F OC USES ON B U FO R D HIG HWAY The Alliance Theatre, in partnership with the Latin American Association and We Love BuHi, presents a reading of the play, “Road to a Dream: The Buford Highway Project” on Oct. 2 at the LAA, 2750 Buford Highway, beginning at 6 p.m. The play is free and open to the public. After many trips to Atlanta and Buford Highway, Los Angeles playwright Mark Valdez suggested to the Alliance they create a play for the Buford Highway community. Over the past year, Valdez has met with many community groups and residents, including Marian Liou, founder of We Love BuHi, and students at Cross Keys High School. The resulting play is an adaptation of the 1929 Pulitzer winning play “Street Scene” by Elmer Rice, Valdez said. The story of the source text revolves around the lives of neighbors, mostly immigrants, sharing a tenement building in New York City. “In our adaptation, we are looking at the stories and lives of new Americans, today. Rather than a tenement house, our play is set in a strip mall and looks at how lives of those who live and work on Buford Highway intersect,” Valdez said. The plot centers on a Honduran family. The family is undocumented, though the daughter has registered with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. “In many ways, our play looks at the pressures that families face when forced to live in the shadows and what that does to people,” he said.

C IT Y EXPA NDS 2017 ROA D PAVI NG PR O J ECTS The city is expanding its street paving projects after a $4.7 million contract to pave more than 10 miles was completed $1 million under budget, according to city officials. The city approved the $4.7 million contract in April to pave 58 streets. With the extra $1 million, the city has decided to bump up paving of another 1.5 miles on eight streets that originally was budgeted for 2018. Streets scheduled to be paved between Oct. 9 and Oct. 31 are: • Ashton Trace from Mitchell Cove to Osborne Road. • Dogwood Terrace from Wilford Drive to E. Osborne Road. • Duke Road from Skyland Drive to Georgian Drive E. • Loraine Street from Pine Grove Avenue to Standard Drive. • Manville Drive from Archway Drive to Clairmont Road. • Mitchell Cove from the southeast end to the northeast end. • Peachtree View from Apple Valley Road to Fernwood Circle. • Wilford Drive from Green Meadows Lane to Camille Drive. From 2013 to 2016, 18.8 percent of the city’s 120 miles had been repaved. With an additional 12.2 miles of road resurfacing or reconstruction this year, 29 percent of Brookhaven’s city roads will be less than 4 years old. Weather permitting, paving on all of this year’s streets should be substantially complete by November.

WAT ER MA I N REP LA C EMEN T MEETING SET Water main replacement projects in Brookhaven will be the topic of an informational meeting Oct. 5 at City Hall, 4362 Peachtree Road N.E., from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. The DeKalb County Department of Watershed Management will host the meeting to discuss impending construction activities related to the Wayland Circle-Richwood Drive and Skyland Drive water main replacement projects. The Wayland Circle-Richwood Drive and Skyland Drive water main replacement projects are part of DeKalb County’s $1.345 billion capital improvement program and will include the installation of more than 2,200 feet of pipe along Wayland Circle and Richwood Drive and nearly 5,100 feet along Skyland Drive. For more information, visit the DWM website at www.dekalbwatershed.com or call the DWM Project Information Line at 1-800-986-1108.

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Big costs, and some lessons, from Irma storm response CITY OF SANDY SPRINGS

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Responding to Tropical Storm Irma on Sept. 11 and 12 left local cities with significant bills and such suggestions as better real-time power outage information, according to early government reports. In Dunwoody, See related Irma cleanup cost commentary the Public Works and reader and Parks and survey, page 10 Recreation departments alone an estimated $20,000 to $30,000, according to the city. In Sandy Springs, a rough estimate from City Manager John McDonough was that storm response cost the city “six figures plus.” Atlanta and Brookhaven did not have cost estimates available yet. “The city is currently reviewing costs associated with Hurricane Irma and will undergo a cost-reconciliation process,” said city of Atlanta spokesperson Jewanna Gaither. “We predict to have figures in the next few weeks.” Among Reporter Newspapers communities, Sandy Springs had the most detailed report available, as McDonough briefed the City Council on Sept. 19. The storm “reminds us, it humbles us, about the power of nature,” McDonough said. McDonough said the city began outlining emergency response plans even

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Community | 5


before Irma approached the U.S. mainland as a historically powerful Category 5 hurricane. Sandy Springs initially was watching Hurricane Harvey as it devastated Houston, Texas, with flooding. Among the local planning was monitoring the Lake Forrest Dam, a troubled structure under Lake Forrest Drive on the Atlanta-Sandy Springs border, on Sept. 1. Both city governments and a group of private residences are working on a plan to repair or replace that aging dam, which the state fears could collapse and flood in a major storm. As Irma approached, Sandy Springs’ first concern was the large number of evacuees heading to metro Atlanta, where they filled up hotels. Then Irma finally arrived here as a tropical storm. Sandy Springs got its first call about a fallen tree at 6:30 a.m. on Sept. 11, McDonough said. By the storm’s end, about 45 roads had been closed by fallen trees or electric lines, and a local resident was killed when a tree fell on his house — one of three people the storm killed in Georgia. Sandy Springs Police officers knocked on doors of homes near Nancy Creek to alert residents about possible flooding, and city officials checked on conditions at assisted living facilities after hearing what McDonough called “horror stories” of seniors dying in Florida blackouts. Irma affected the city’s Call Center, which handles any type of city services request. Providing through an outsourcing contract, the Call Center service is based in Orlando, Fla., and had to evacuate for the storm. Backup service was provided from a Virginia office, McDonough said. Officials say the Call Center handled 1,930 calls during and immediately after Irma, but received only one complaint for poor response. McDonough said Sandy Springs had generally good communications with

other governments and such private agencies as Georgia Power Co. While generally pleased with the storm response, McDonough had one recommendation: Better real-time information from Georgia Power on where its crews were working. As an example, McDonough said he had a tree removal crew on standby and had to send them home because he could not tell whether Georgia Power was working on fallen lines in the same area. Such information also could allow cities to use their own crews to do some basic electrical repairs, he suggested. “Let’s be transparent about those things for all of our communities,” he said. Sandy Springs also quickly reviewed city streets for “dangerous” trees that will be proactively “eliminated” so they don’t eventually fall onto power lines or structures, McDonough said. He estimated the list, which was not immediately available, at about 100 trees. City spokesperson Dan Coffer later said it is about 50 to 60 trees. All local cities activated their versions of an emergency response headquarters, where staff worked around the clock to monitor conditions and supervise response. For Brookhaven, it was the city’s first use of the “Emergency Operations Center,” and officials deemed it a success— especially because the government itself fell victim to a power outage. “We had most of our staff in 24-hour mode, either at work or on-call, throughout the duration of this event,” said Mayor John Ernst in a written statement. “The EOC was able to function and succeed even though City Hall was in a blackout like most of the rest of the city.” –Evelyn Andrews and Dyana Bagby contributed

LOCAL STO RM IMPACTS BY THE NUMBERS Here are some of the early numbers on the impact of and responses to Tropical Storm Irma provided by local cities.

BROOK H AVEN ■ City government handled 209 incident reports, including downed trees, blocked roads and traffic signal outages.

DUN WOODY ■ Approximately 25 trees removed from roads. ■ Four city crews of combined staff from Public Works and Parks and Recreation were dedicated to cleanup from Sept. 10 to 15 and logged 80 hours of overtime work.



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Traveling exhibit celebrates the area’s Jewish community BY JACLYN TURNER Heritage Sandy Spring’s newest exhibit, “L’Chaim Sandy Springs,” celebrates Jewish participation in the community. “The Jewish community has been a significant part of the culture of Sandy Springs from its formation to now, and we wanted to highlight that contribution,” said Leslie Walden, an HSS board member. The exhibit’s title refers to a common celebratory toast that means “To life!” in Hebrew. The exhibit, consisting of images and comments from local leaders and community members arranged in a timeline, opened at the William-Payne Farmhouse on Sept. 23 during the Sandy Springs Festival and will remain there until Oct. 1. Next, the exhibit is scheduled to be displayed at Temple Sinai and The Weber School in Sandy Springs and the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta in Dunwoody. “The way this exhibit works, is if it travels to a school, the kids are really fa◄ Melissa Swindell, HSS’s director of historical resources, stands in front of the first panel of the “L’Chaim Sandy Springs” exhibit. PHOTOS BY JACLYN TURNER

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miliar with Instagram, so they will initially be attracted to it because it’s something they know,” said Melissa Swindell, HSS director of historical resources. “When it travels to a synagogue, the adults will say, ‘I remember when this happened,’ and be attracted to the photos and the art.” Each panel is themed, and focuses on Sandy Spring’s Jewish schools, synagogues, arts, food, media and the roots of Jewish participation in the city. Representatives of the Atlanta Jewish Academy, Chaya Mushka Children’s House, The Davis Academy, the Epstein School, and The Weber School explore their approaches to Judaism and education. Members of Congregation Beth Tefillah, Congregation B’nai Torah, Congregation Or Hadash, Temple Emanu-El, Temple Sinai, and The Kehilla discuss their histories and what makes them unique. HSS collects and manages information and documents related to the history of the community with archives going back to the Civil War, but this is the first time the organization has collected artifacts to document the Jewish community in Sandy Springs. “We wanted to represent the entire population of Sandy Springs, which the Jewish community is a large population, with a complete and thorough archive,” Swindell said. Swindell and Walden conducted more than 120 interviews and conversations to understand the oral histories of Judaism in Sandy Springs as well as current achievements. The two started with Temple Sinai congregant and Sandy Springs City Councilmember Andy Bauman and the synagogue’s history committee, who wanted to create an exhibit to commemorate Temple Sinai’s 50th anniversary in 2018. Their explorations spread from there. “Being able to just network with everybody; there was so much we didn’t know who to contact or how to get in contact with them ... but one person would point us to another,” Swindell said. While the city of Atlanta and the Southeast have the Breman Museum, which holds archives for Temple Sinai, several newer synagogues and schools haven’t processed archives. “Some of the information can be found on websites, but this is the first time [that information related to Sandy Springs] is being pulled together into one space,” Swindell said. The Dewald family, the first identified Jewish family in Sandy Springs, moved into the area in the 1930s. Robert Ney opened the first pharmacy in Sandy Springs in 1955. In 1968, Temple Sinai was formed in Sandy Springs with the blessing of The Temple in Atlanta, which was overcrowded.

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When metro Atlanta started booming, and people started moving to the suburbs, Sandy Springs gained its Jewish population, crediting medical complexes such as Northside Hospital, as drawing Jewish Atlantans north of the city and helping to create a community feeling. The medical community and especially the hospital chaplains helped initiate the religious integration of the city, according to Walden. The exhibit also pays tribute to the city’s first mayor, Eva Galambos. Her family, survivors of the Holocaust, helped make the decision to give a home to an exhibit based on the life of Holocaust victim Anne Frank. In 2016, the city formed a sister city relationship with the Western Galilee Cluster in Israel with the coordination of Mayor Rusty Paul. The Consul Gen-

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eral of Israel and Andrea Worthy, economic development director for the city of Sandy Springs, spoke about both cities’ unique and diverse populations and commitment to technology and medicine for the project. “It’s not just a Jewish community. It’s a place where Jews, Arabs, Druze, and Christians all live together. They take a lot of pride into that,” Worthy said. Swindell and Walden said the exhibit took more time to pull together than they originally had expected because they kept finding more to include. “It kept growing,” Walden said. “We first started with questions for schools and synagogues, we didn’t want to leave anything out and to be as thorough as possible.” For more information, see HeritageSandySprings.org.

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8 | Education

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Rand Wise, Marist School

ing at the private Brookhaven school in 2014. He teaches calculus, geometry and problem-solving for math competitions.


Why are you involved with the American Mathematics Competitions program? How do you think it helps your students?


Rand Wise was a runner-up contestant on NBC’s “Jeopardy!” in May.

Marist School teacher Rand Wise last month won an award for encouraging his students to participate in math competitions, and, in May, used his competition experience to become a runner-up contestant on NBC’s “Jeopardy!” Wise was awarded the Edyth May Sliffe Award in August for his work with American Mathematics Competitions, which have students complete examinations. They move on to harder rounds if they score high enough. Wise said they are an “incredible means of challenging students to go beyond the math they learn in the classroom.”


The award is given annually by the Mathematical Association of America to approximately 20 teachers in the U.S. “who have done outstanding work in motivating students in mathematics through participation in one of the MAA American Mathematics Competitions,” according to the organization’s website. Wise also coaches the school’s academic and math competition teams, which compete in quiz games similar to “Jeopardy!” A teacher since 1991, Wise began teach-

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I think it is an incredible means of challenging students to go beyond the math they learn in the classroom, and to apply the math they do know in creative and challenging ways. No matter how much math you know, there is always more math and harder math out there. Working with students on AMC questions is a nice way to get outside of a fixed curriculum and explore. It is intellectually stimulating and great fun; there is no other feeling in the world quite like the feeling you get when you finally solve a



really tough problem.


Why did you choose to go on “Jeopardy!”? What was the experience like?


I have wanted to be on “Jeopardy!” ever since I watched with my family growing up. It was definitely a “bucket list” experience. I was disappointed in myself for coming in second, but the experience was amazing. Getting to see behind the scenes, meet the incredible crew, talk with Alex Trebek, and getting to share the experience with my wife and son were fantastic.

Q: What attracted you to teaching at



I discovered even as a student that I was good at explaining things so that people could understand even complex topics. I enjoy learning and knowing things at a deep level, and setting out to teach challenges me to know things even more deeply than my students do.


What keeps you going year after



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I enjoy teaching greatly. Also, it is very rewarding to hear from old students who have gone out into the world and done amazing things, and who have grown and matured into responsible adults who contribute to their communities.


What do you think makes a great teacher?


Someone who cares about helping people, who makes a personal connection with students, who knows their subject really well and fosters a love of


Wise poses at one of his students’ math competitions.

that subject in their students, who is patient and forgiving, who can find a way to challenge each and every student to rise to their potential.


What do you want to see in your students?


I want my students to give 100 percent; to feel comfortable making mistakes and asking questions. I want my students to love mathematics, especially if they come to me having had bad experiences with math. I want to see my students grapple with the “why” of a process rather than simply memorizing a series of steps.


Do you have a project or special program you use year after year?


I have done some interesting projects over the years, but usually mix them up. I have had students build kaleidoscopes and produce geometrical art, and last year a fellow teacher and I had our students make geometry-inspired lanterns. We got the idea from the popular BeltLine Lantern Parade. In calculus, I have some favorite problems that I bring back every year, including designing things to optimize certain parameters.


Is there a “trick” that works to get students involved?


My “trick” is simply a mixture of perseverance, humor and humanity. I try to make things student-centered as much as possible. Editor’s note: Through our “Exceptional Educator” articles, Reporter Newspapers showcases the work of some of the outstanding teachers and administrators at our local schools. If you would like to recommend a teacher or administrator to be the subject of an Exceptional Educator article, please email editor@ReporterNewspapers.net.

SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12. 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net


Students from local schools have qualified as semifinalists in the 63rd annual National Merit Scholarship Program. About 1 percent of high school seniors nationwide qualify as semifinalists. The students were chosen for their scores on qualifying tests, and now must submit letters of SPECIAL recommendation, college entrance exam scores and inforEthan Moon. mation about their leadership and community activities. Students then chosen as finalists receive a $2,500 scholarship. The Fulton County School District, Wesleyan School and Marist School sent out announcements on students who qualified. Fulton announced that 123 students qualified as semifinalists, including several students from Sandy Springs schools. North Springs Charter High School students Claudia Chu, Jared Coffsky, Daniel Lopez and Eric Miller and Riverwood International Charter School students Saya A. Abney and Lily Schneider qualified. Six Marist School students, Allison Hart, Jack Pantlin, Paul Plaia, Beatrice Russell, Conor Walsh and Benjamin Wise, qualified as semifinalists, the school announced. Ethan Moon, a student from Dunwoody who attends Wesleyan School in Peachtree Corners, qualified, the school said.


DeKalb Schools will extend school days by 20 minutes from October to December to make up for days missed during Tropical Storm Irma. Every school day will be extended beginning on Oct. 2 and lasting through the end of the first semester on Dec. 20. DeKalb schools and offices will also remain open on Election Day on Nov. 7, according to the release. “We lost four days and we’re trying to be as creative and productive as we can about recapturing that time,” Superintendent and CEO R. Stephen Green said in a statement. DeKalb chose to extend schools days rather than shorten fall or winter breaks. The district did not want to use all of its allotted inclement weather days in case it needs them during the winter. Fulton County School District spokesperson Susan Hale said the district is discussing plans, but has made no decision yet. Atlanta Public Schools spokesperson Latisha Gray said the district has no plans to add any make-up days.


Five students and one teacher from Riverwood International Charter School, a Fulton public high school in Sandy Springs, traveled to Japan in June for a two-week language education program. Five of the school’s Japanese language students flew to Tokyo, where they visited museums and palaces before travelling to Shizuoka to attend Inatori High School. In addition to attending classes, the students learned about Japanese flower arranging, calligraphy and martial arts, and volunteered at a preschool. The students also visited Kyoto, where they visited temples, shrines and museums. In the past year, Riverwood sponsored student trips to Nicaragua, Spain and France as part of the school’s international studies program.


St. Jude the Apostle Catholic School, a school in Sandy Springs, has created a new softball team that has won several of its first games. The team members all reside in Brookhaven, Dunwoody or Sandy Springs, and have won against the Roswell Junior Hornets, Epstein, Mt. Vernon Presbyterian, Galloway and FelSPECIAL lowship Christian, according to a press Front row, from left, St. Jude’s new softball release. team includes students Latifa Madesko, St. Francis and Marist have both deMary Grace Troncale, Riley King Walker, feated the team in recent games, ac- Nina Parker and Taylor Monaghan. Back row, from left, Megan Stewart, Amanda Hassler, cording to the release. Coach Jonathan Worrell, Meghan Hamrick, “I could not have asked for a better Katie Brandt Brawwell, Coach Scott Braswell, group of girls to coach for the first seaAshley Benson and Rachel Quinnelly. son of St. Jude softball. The girls are incredibly supportive of each other, have hit the ball well and have played great defense,” Jonathan Worrell, the head coach, said in a press release.


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10 | Commentary

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Commentary: A power-ful lesson from Irma Irma taught me something. I like electricity. Hurricane Irma wreaked horrible damage on the Caribbean and Florida. I don’t want to diminish that in any way. But when Irma blew through metro Atlanta, downgraded to a tropical storm, we thought we’d dodged the worst of it at our house. The winds blew, but they didn’t seem as bad around us as had been predicted. Rain fell, but it didn’t seem much worse than a usual rainstorm. Yet Irma managed to do something that we’d never seen at our house. Despite decades of keeping an eye on tornadoes, cooling it during snowstorms, waiting out downpours and fearfully watching windstorms, we’d never lost power for more than a few hours. Irma changed that. This time, we had no electricity for more than two days. And I discovered that I missed it. No, more than missed it. Electricity had become part of just about everything I do. Without realizing it, I had filled my days with electronic stuff. Electricity was everywhere and part of everything. We were never in any sort of danger, but without electricity, things changed. A lot. Without electricity, I couldn’t work. I couldn’t read the news on the internet, play solitaire on the computer, find real cards to play solitaire without the computer, listen to music, see the Braves play baseball or enjoy watching the detectives in some quaint English village solve a murder on TV. I fell way behind on my daily quota of outrage for the goings-on in Washington and lost track of what Irma was doing beyond my house. Without electricity, I couldn’t even make coffee. I couldn’t even grind the beans to make coffee.

Without electricity, I suddenly realized, life was boring. At first, I thought the absence of electricity would be no problem. After all, people lived happily for millennia before Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse came along. And we never had power during those camping trips I took with my sons during their Boy Scout days. We did just fine. It was kind of fun not having electricity. No music on the stereo? No problem, I thought. I’d just make my own. My son and I broke out our acoustic guitars and played together by candlelight. But in a half-hour, we’d run through every song I had memorized. We didn’t have enough light to read sheet music to other songs, so we gave up. I decided to fill the dark hours by reading a book or two. But after a couple of hours of enjoyable reading, my e-book ran out of power. I couldn’t plug it in for a re-charge. No problem, I thought. I’ll simply read a real book, one with pages and not digits. I have plenty in the house. I thought that given the circumstances, I’d try re-reading Thoreau. But then I realized that without lights, I’d never find my ancient copy of “Walden” buried away in darkened bookshelves. I settled on Twain, pulling out a dusty copy of “Roughing It” that had been stored closer to hand. But reading by candlelight proved more difficult than I had expected. I don’t know how Abraham Lincoln did it. To make out the words in tiny type, I had to move the candle dangerously close to the page. I suddenly envisioned a book aflame, followed by the sound of fire trucks. I gave up on reading. Finally, I decided to try a jigsaw puzzle. I like them and they take lots of time to complete.

Puzzling during daylight hours worked fine. As it grew darker, though, I found I had a hard time telling the pieces apart, I switched to a flashlight to spotlight the piecJoe Earle es. That meant I Editor-at-large at could only clearReporter Newspapers. ly see one piece at a time. It turns out, that’s a surprisingly frustrating way to do a jigsaw puzzle. I went to bed. I wondered, how did we keep from being bored on those scout camping trips? Then it hit me: We stayed busy staying busy. We had to build fires, pitch tents, tend fires, police camp, watch the fires burn just to make sure they didn’t burn the place down. The whole day was built around eating and sleeping and staying warm. My electric life takes care of just about all of that stuff. I thought to myself that I should learn from this experience and be better prepared for next time. I’d get bigger flashlights, more batteries, a radio that didn’t plug in, maybe even a battery-powered phone charger. I’ll get a new French press for coffee. I’ll figure out how to get by using less electric stuff. But now, the next morning, the power is back. I’m typing on my computer, drinking a freshly ground cup of coffee from my Mr. Coffee while listening to a new Randy Newman CD and trying to get the TV cable and internet to work again. There’s news to follow. And somewhere on Netflix, there’s a detective in a quaint English village with a murder to solve.

Community Survey: Planning for future storms Local residents say they’re happy with the local response to Tropical Storm Irma, though they had some ideas for better dealing with the next one. Respondents to the 1Q cellphone survey of 200 residents of communities served by Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta INtown generally gave local officials and utilities good marks for their handling of storm repairs. But some respondents offered suggestions on how to improve the response to future storms. “They did a fine job,” a 53-year-old Buckhead man commented. More than nine of 10 respondents said local governments and utilities responded either very well or OK in repairing damage from the storm. Only 9.5 percent rated the response as poor or terrible. Hurricane Irma, which inflicted extensive damage on the Caribbean and Florida, was downgraded to a tropical storm in Georgia, but it still brought high winds and rain and knocked out power, closed roads and downed trees across the state, including in metro Atlanta. More than half of Georgia Power Co.’s customers in DeKalb County lost power, according to media reports, and some local residents were without power for days.

Some called for better coordination. A 49-year-old Brookhaven man suggested officials “proactively communicate before, during, and after the storm of current and/or potential problems.” Others suggested preparing for the problem before it arrives by burying power lines or identifying trees likely to fall. “Bury Buckhead power lines!!!!! Too many trees,” a 48-year-old Buckhead man said. Other respondents called for better use of technology to communicate with residents about the storm cleanup. “They should use mobile websites to show consumers in detail where damage has occurred and which houses/businesses are off,” a 49-year-old Sandy Springs man noted. “Then show specifics about the progress -- known, dispatched, on-site, repairing, testing, etc.” A 36-year-old Atlanta woman thought it would help to have the information in one place. “When the power is out use of radio announcements are key! It would be great to have one website dedicated to when disasters happen,” she wrote. Not everyone was pleased with the response. One 20-year-old Brookhaven woman had a simple suggestion for bettering communications with the public: “Answer the phone.” BK

SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12, 2017

Commentary | 11


Compliments to the comma I confessed in a previous column, “Grammar Snob,” that I am, in fact, a Grammar Snob. I am one of those people (there are three of us) who find robust humor in Jack Sparrow’s use of parallel structure in “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl,” where he states, “I think we’ve all arrived at a very special place. Spiritually, ecumenically, grammatically.” Ha! Ha! I’m giggling right now. But I reserve special affection for the comma. It is so often misused, unused, and underused, I feel that the least I can do is devote 675 words to the little guy. Honestly, the comma is an invention of our civilized world that is not unlike the zipper: Even though we might occasionally get hung up on it, it truly makes our lives easier. Ironically, another construct of our modern world Robin Conte is a writer is hastening the demise of our friend, comma. I am reand mother of four who ferring, of course, to texting. You can find a teenager at lives in Dunwoody. She a Barry Manilow concert more often than you’ll find a can be contacted at comma in a text. My texts, however, will come to you robinjm@earthlink.net. properly punctuated. I can’t help it. I take heart in the fact that I’m in good company regarding my respect for the comma, as there is an Oscar Wilde anecdote that has been entertaining Grammar Snobs for decades. The story goes that when Wilde was questioned smugly about what kind of work he did all day, he responded that he spent most of the day putting in a comma and the rest of the day taking it out. Go, Oscar! I do, too! (Or is it, “Go Oscar; I do, too”?) Anyhoo, then my editor gets in the game with me, because I’ll put a comma in, and he’ll take it out. I happen to enjoy writing the occasional long, breezy and rhythmic, free-flowing sentence — not so free-flowing and stream–of-consciousness as James Joyce, per se, but lengthy enough to cover the lumpy parts and loose enough to be comfortable, like a swing top. But my editor doesn’t like long sentences. He likes them short. He likes them punchy. He likes them short and punchy. He takes out commas and puts in periods.

Robin’s Nest

This brings me to another comma entirely, which is the serial comma, a.k.a. the Oxford comma, my absolute favorite comma of all. I think of it as a rare gem when I see it glowing brightly in its perfect setting between the penultimate word in a series and a conjunction. My editor, however, uses the Associated Press comma, which SPECIAL is invisible. So I’ll write a Robin keeps a spare comma handy phrase such as, “planes, in case her editor kills one. trains, and automobiles,” and as soon as I pass it along to my editor, my attentively placed serial comma (the one after “trains”) will disappear like my kids when it’s time to do yardwork. I maintain that the conjunction is not enough. Imagine us walking through a garden, stopping along the way to smell the roses, as it were, and then when we near the end of our stroll, we are shoved right past the final bed of flowers. Well, that would be rude. It’s the same way with the written word. We walk along through a series, pausing politely after each word or phrase in it, and then we hit the no man’s land of comma blankage and stumble clumsily, head-first into the final word. It’s madness. My affection for the serial comma was rekindled several months ago when I learned about a court case in Maine that involved said comma; it had to do with dairy workers and the tasks they performed that would or would not garner them overtime pay. Without going into journalistic details, I will tell you that the final two items on the list of tasks ineligible for overtime pay were not separated by a comma. The judge stated, “For want of a comma, we have this case,” and, in fact, for want of a comma, the dairy workers won. The devil is in the details, and the clarity is in the comma.

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Yehimi Cambron said her mural of butterflies on the side of the Havana Sandwich Shop on Buford Highway is a symbol for all immigrants. Cambron, a DACA recipient, graduated from Cross Keys High School and Agnes Scott College and now teaches art at Cross Keys. Her mural is one of 10 on the corridor that are part of the Living Walls public art conference.

Buford Highway public art event highlights immigrant experience BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

Yehimi Adriana Cambron grew up on Buford Highway. She lived just down the street from the Havana Sandwich Shop, where her mother once worked. When the opportunity arose to paint a butterfly mural on the side of the sandwich shop to bring awareness to the lives of immigrants as part of the We Love BuHi and Living Walls public art conference, Cambron saw it as a milestone in her life. “My message with this mural is we are all immigrants and I want people to think of the history of this country. Everybody who is here came from somewhere else,” Cambron said. “I want people to recognize we are you and you are us.” Cambron graduated from Cross Keys High School, attended Agnes Scott College and now teaches art at Cross Keys. She was born in Mexico and was a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipient, among those who also are known as Dreamers. Her mural was just one of many included in the BuHi Walk, a collaboration between We Love BuHi and Living Walls that was held Sept. 8-17. The series of events included an inaugural restaurant week, a lecture series discuss-

ing the future of the corridor, a movie night, a Bike BuHi tour of Buford Highway, a night market and block party, and a closing curators’ talk and case study. The seven-year-old Living Walls conference in the past has focused on downtown Atlanta. Monica Campana, co-founder and executive director of Living Walls, said bringing the public art experience to Buford Highway this year was intended to elevate communities living along the highway corridor renowned for its multicultural restaurants and small businesses. “It was time,” she said Sept. 16 at the block party in Northeast Plaza. “It’s been a long road to get here … and we’ve been engaging with the community for so long. It’s been enlightening and challenging … and through it all I have found this brand new, incredible love for Atlanta and the immigrant communities that exist here. “My heart feels very full,” said Campana, an immigrant from Peru. “I think we are here to make a statement and I think it shows.” Most of the murals are located in Brookhaven, including three in Northeast Plaza at 3307 Buford Highway. Murals also are located at Cross Keys High School, 1626 North Druid Hills Road;

El Progreso at 3061 Buford Highway; Atimmigrants who make it special. At the lanta Package at 3268 Buford Highway; Sept. 16 block part, music blasted in the Crown Car Wash at 3751 Buford Highway; background and the buzz of conversaPrecision Auto Care in Chamblee at 4196 tions and laughter surrounded her. She Buford Highway; and a billboard at Busaid she was happy to see people from ford Highway and McElroy Road. The mumany different backgrounds converging rals will be up indefinitely. together on Buford Highway. As redevelopment and gentrification “This is the first step to something of Buford Highway creeps closer, combigger,” she said. “In this block, I always munity advocates such as Marian Liou, see a certain demographic. [Tonight,] I Brookhaven resident and founder of We see other people attending. I hope this Love BuHi, said it is important to bring creates more bridges and connections.” people who live and work along the highway into conversations about its future. Liou says she founded We Love BuHi to protect and promote the diversity of Buford Highway and advo- Organizers of the Sept. 16 night market and block party at Northeast Plaza cate for the celebrate by dancing in a portion of the parking lot set aside for the event.


SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12, 2017

Community | 13


Kroger gets council OK to open bar


BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

A Kroger supermarket on Peachtree Road in Brookhaven got the OK from the City Council at its Sept. 26 meeting to open a bar at its store that would be similar to others throughout metro Atlanta. The go-ahead came as part of the council’s approval to overhaul the city’s alcohol ordinance, which now includes a provision to allow grocery stores to sell beer and wine for consumption on premises. The concept is similar to a Kroger on Glenwood Avenue in Atlanta, according to Kroger representatives who spoke to the council during its work session. The most controversial part of the ordinance — covering the allowed hours of operation — was not voted on as part of the ordinance approved Wednesday. That section was pulled from the code at the request of Mayor John Ernst. The council will consider it at the Oct. 10 meeting. City staff has been working on a rewrite of the alcohol ordinance for months. The amendments made to allow for grocery stores to sell beer and wine by the drink were negotiated late Sept. 25 and until the final minutes before the Sept. 26 vote to hash out final details. Kroger recently approached the city about obtaining a permit to allow the consumption of alcohol on its premises at 3871 Peachtree Road and the city realized the issue was not addressed in its current rewrite, leading to the last-minute amendments. No timeline for the bar concept was revealed. The Kroger representatives did say the beer sold at its other similar stores are local beers. The approved alcohol ordinance rewrite includes adding a “G class” license that allows businesses such as salons to serve free beer and wine, limited to 8 ounces of beer and 6 ounces of wine. Complimentary service on Sundays would be prohibited between 2 a.m. and 11:59 a.m. The proposal says the permits would be issued only to businesses “that derive zero percent of their gross revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages.” The rewrite also prohibits sexually oriented businesses from serving alcohol. The only such business in the city now is the Pink Pony, a strip club that has an agreement with the city to operate, including selling alcohol, for another four years. In exchange, the strip club pays $225,000 a year to the police department. The Pink Pony would not be affected by the alcohol ordinance rewrite. But when the club’s agreement with the city expires, and if it wants to remain in the city, it would not be allowed to serve alcohol. The one issue the council has gone back and forth on is cutting back bar hours. In Brookhaven, last call for late-night venues is set at 2:55 a.m. with closing at 3:30 a.m. Restaurants also may stay open until 3:30 a.m., but must stop serving alcohol at 12:30 a.m. Last call in Atlanta is set at 2:30 a.m. and closing time is 3 a.m. Police say the later hours in Brookhaven lead many bar hoppers to drive to Buford Highway to keep the party going, leading to high crime along the corridor, especially at Northeast Plaza, as well as many DUIs. The proposed ordinance rewrite sets Brookhaven’s last call for all venues serving booze at 2:30 a.m., with a closing time of 3 a.m.

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Methodist Dunwoody United Gil Yates, about to begin at for his classmate Coast Indians was making a beeline A class on Pacific strode into the room, Church when a man OK.” approached. “Shuffling’sbuddy, who would not front row, center. said, as the man his “No running!” Yates is a year older than all in good fun. Yates The teasing was age: 91. with Perimeter Adults but did share his classes this spring reveal his name, 175 students taking of whom The men are among most adults, (PALS). for senior By Kathy Dean Learning & Services continuing education the start. year of providing been members from PALS is in its 25th need for of Dunwoody, have Wethe hear takes care of it all and his wife, Dot, and this kind of are 60-plus. Yates rings especially the time: less is more. The to help other people, phrase true for older “People our age want made lifelong friends.” adults who are empty nests and Yates said. “We have facing are4 ready to Continued on page fellowship,” Dot of their enjoy the lives. Intown and north metro second half many comforta Atlanta offer ble options for them. “Baby boomers have spent much working and of their lives building said Dawn Anderson their wealth for retiremen t,” , Realtor, Dorsey “As retiremen Alston Realtors. t becomes more of a reality, they plan their transition begin to to downsize. Ease and affordability of life, proximity are certainly the goals of most downsizing common boomers.” The trend of continues to grow, 55+ active adult commun ities Anderson said. well qualified “Baby boomers buyers and know are looking for.” exactly what they are Kim Isaacs, aged Avalon in Alpharet 58, said that her townhom e in ta gives her everything they and her husband want. “We had home in Johns lived in our previous Creek for 19 years. left for college, When our last we child and really didn’t decided that we wanted a change need a large house of us,” she said. for just the two



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Emory joins Greenway supporters Continued from page 1 er and State Rep. Megan Hanson. Also attending was Lee Harrop, program director for the Atlanta BeltLine. The Emory speaker at the fundraiser was Mark Rapaport, chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University School of Medicine and Chief of Psychiatric Services at Emory Healthcare. Rapaport spoke of the health benefits of having a linear park system like the Greenway. With Emory Healthcare’s recent purchase of more than 60 acres of Executive Park near North Druid Hills Road and I-85, connectivity to the planned Greenway over I-85 “is critical to all of us at Emory,” he said. No other specific details of how Emory plans to assist in the Greenway were immediately available from Emory, but Betsy Eggers, chair of the nonprofit Peachtree Creek Greenway board of directors said the board would love to see Emory connected to the linear park. “They support good public health and the Greenway is a good example of providing good public health,” she said in a later interview. The nonprofit serves solely as an advocacy group trying to gain support for the project, she said, and it will be up to Emory, and the city of Brookhaven, to hash out details to make the connection. At the fundraiser, Eggers noted all of the land along the Greenway in Brookhaven is privately owned. The city is using eminent domain to acquire 19 acres on Briarwood Road, where a trailhead is planned, after not being able to reach a deal with landowners to buy the land earlier this year. The case goes before a special master, a person appointed by a judge to hear evidence from both sides, in early November, according to Brookhaven City Attorney Chris Balch. Brookhaven officials plan to break

ground early next year on a “model mile” of the Greenway between North Druid Hills Road and Briarwood Road. The 1.2-mile stretch of the first phase is the central link of the entire 2.9-mile Greenway section in Brookhaven. The Greenway is planned to run through Chamblee and Doraville, and its proponents want it eventually to connect to PATH400 in Buckhead and then to the Atlanta BeltLine. Also attending the fundraiser were several Georgia Tech graduate students who are taking a semester-long class, or studio, on the Peachtree Creek Greenway and Buford Highway. Several days after the fundraiser, the students held a community meeting at the Briarwood Park community center to solicit community feedback on some of the students’ main goals. They include exploring a complete street design for Buford Highway; incorporating multi-modal transit and affordable housing to promote a healthy environment and people; and preparing a development guide for the corridor that encourages mixed-use development, preserves affordable housing and balances jobs and housing. About 20 people showed up to the event that was advertised on social media. Kelsey Waidehaus, a project manager for the studio, said students are working with the Latin American Association and Center for Pan Asian Community Services to reach members of the immigrant community who live and work on Buford Highway. The students are also working with Claudia Colichon, the city’s bilingual outreach specialist, to translate documents and surveys into Spanish. City spokesperson Burke Brennan said Colichon also is translating city documents related to the Greenway into Spanish. Eggers, who also attended the stu-



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Betsy Eggers, center, chair of the nonprofit Peachtree Creek Greenway board of directors, said Emory Healthcare’s support of the Peachtree Creek Greenway as a presenting sponsor for a recent fundraiser is exciting news for the planned linear park.

dents’ community meeting, said she was excited to see young people looking “outside the box” to tackle issues along Buford Highway and to find ways to connect the corridor to the Greenway. Outreach efforts by the Greenway board to the LAA and CPACS have also been made, she said. The 13 students, seeking master’s degrees in city and regional planning, are going through six previous plans to cull information specific to the Brookhaven portion of Buford Highway. Among them are the Peachtree Creek Greenway Master Plan, the city’s bike and pedestrian plan, the city’s 2034 Comprehensive Plan, and this year’s Doraville and Chamblee Buford Highway Livable Centers Initiative. Brookhaven resident Michael Runestar suggested the students take their project to the people who will be impacted the most by Buford Highway redevelopment. One woman said the bus stops on the MARTA 39 route are packed every morning and could be a good place to start. The students’ workshop included breakout groups during which people

used different colored dots to show their preferences on topics such as the kind of development they would like to see on Buford Highway and wrote on pieces of paper what they love about the corridor (many people praised the highway’s cultural diversity and restaurants). Joe Hurd, who said he works for a company that owns residential property along Buford Highway in Brookhaven, was at the event with Judy McManus, senior director of Berkadia, a real estate company. He declined to say what property the company owns. “I want to understand what the future will look like for our residents,” Hurd said.

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SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12, 2017

Community | 15



Draft plans for a 1.38 mile section of Peachtree Road include a multi-use path and a raised median.

GDOT proposes major changes to Peachtree Road Continued from page 1 Atlanta Regional Commission. The proposals are intended to boost commercial development and to improve pedestrian safety and connectivity within this portion of Peachtree Road. The stretch of the Peachtree corridor includes the Brookhaven-Oglethorpe MARTA station, a strip of retail development, Town Brookhaven and Oglethorpe University. Proposals include keeping the same number of street lanes through the area while narrowing them from 12 feet wide to 10.5 feet; constructing a 10-foot wide multi-use sidewalk/ bicycle track on the east side of the road along the MARTA wall; and replacing the center turn lane with a raised median, Will Sheehan, project manager for consultants AECOM, said at a Sept. 14 open house at City Hall. AECOM was hired by the city last year for the project. The raised median would keep motorists who are leaving businesses on the west side of the road from darting into the turn lane in the center of the road, a practice that is not safe or efficient, he said. “The idea is to funnel left turns to traffic signals,” Sheehan said. Anne Beckwith, a Realtor who lives in the Historic Brookhaven neighborhood and who attended the open house, said she drives this stretch of road daily, and often several times a day. “I like that they [the city and GDOT] are thinking of the different issues in the area, like bikes and pedestrians,” she said. “My biggest concern remains the traffic congestion at North Druid [Hills Road] and Dresden [Drive], primarily caused by the significant amount of left-turning traffic. “My other concern is that serious bikers may not want to use the path, because on the path, and unlike on the street, they will have to yield at cross streets. Meanwhile, the street has been narrowed 1.5 feet per lane, so there won’t be room for bikers,” she said. Planned improvements will make also make it easier for pedestrians to access the DeKalb Services Center, Oglethorpe University and the Brookhaven-Oglethorpe MARTA station and to get to bus stops along this section of Peachtree Road, according to city officials. “The project will improve connectivity of transportation infrastructure to the surrounding areas including … the Town Brookhaven mixed-use development,” according to a project description from the city. “This project will encourage and pro-

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mote future redevelopment projects within the area as more residents and citizens will find it attractive and convenient while businesses will view the area as prime and lucrative.” Other improvements proposed include adding landscaping strips, decorative brick paver strips, benches, trash receptacles, bus shelters and street lighting for pedestrians. Several retaining walls are also being proposed to separate commercial property from private property. Sheehan said the earliest the project could be put out to bid would be November 2020. The project would take approximately two years, he said. Construction is currently estimated to cost $5.5 million with acquisition of right-of-way estimated to cost $3.7 million. “Nothing is set in stone,” he said. “These are very early estimates.” Cyclist Jack Honderd said at the open house he believed the proposals would be a major improvement to the area and the flow of traffic would be essentially the same, if not better. “It’s nice to see some Buckhead concepts being brought to here,” he said. Honderd said the bicycle/pedestrian path along the MARTA wall is difficult, but there are so many curb cuts in front of the stores and businesses across the street that it would be too dangerous to include a path on that side of the road. Also, the multi-use path extends only from Dresden Drive to Ashford-Dunwoody Road with no plans to extender further along Peachtree Road, limiting its usage to pedestrians and cyclists, he said. City Councilmember Linley Jones said she was impressed with the draft proposals, saying the plans increase pedestrian safety, something badly needed in the area. City Councilmember Bates Mattison also praised the initial proposals, saying they greatly enhance pedestrian and bike paths and connectivity to various areas along Peachtree Street, including Brookhaven Park, a popular dog park. “These ideas give us the tools to connect ... and connect the experience of Peachtree, like the BeltLine,” he said.






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16 | Out & About

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Opening reception Wednesday, Oct. 4, 5 to 7 p.m.






More than 30 businesses and 30 artists will showcase original paintings, drawings, collages, mixed media and photography for sale to the public throughout the month. A portion of proceeds from each sale will benefit the Dunwoody Arts Association and other organizations. The public is invited to the opening reception at Fidelity Bank, 2 Perimeter Center East at Ashford-Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. Artwork locations and other info: dunwoodyfineart.org.


Friday, Oct. 6, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday, Oct. 7, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, Oct. 8, noon to 5 p.m.


Wednesday, Oct. 4, 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Dunwoody Woman’s Club 45th annual Dunwoody Home Tour features four homes in Dunwoody and Sandy Springs. $25. Info: dunwoodywomansclub.com.

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The 16th annual Spruill Center for the Arts Ceramic Bowl Sale offers pieces created by students and instructors of the center’s Ceramics Department. All proceeds benefit the Ceramics Department. On Friday night, a variety of chilis can also be sampled. Free. Spruill Arts Education Center, 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. Info: spruillarts.org.


Saturday, Oct. 7, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., VIP admission starts at noon.

Taste chili or Brunswick stew from more than 75 restaurant and amateur competition teams at this sixth annual event at Brookhaven Park. Live music, beer and wine, kids’ activity zone. A portion of proceeds benefit the Atlanta Fundraising Foundation and the Brookhaven Park Conservancy. Free parking behind MARTA’s Brookhaven/Oglethorpe Station and Brookhaven City Hall. 2660 Osborne Road, Brookhaven. Kids 12 and under free. General admission: $20-25; VIP: $56-60. Info: brookhavenchilicookoff.com.


Saturday, Oct. 7, 8 to 11 p.m. Free beginner dance lesson at 7 p.m.

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The Big Easy Playboys put on a Louisiana-style dance party at the Dorothy Benson Center in an event sponsored by the Atlanta Cajun Zydeco Association. Tickets: $18; $14 active military; $5 students. No partner necessary. All ages welcome. Cajun/Creole food for sale. 6500 Vernon Woods Drive, Sandy Springs. Info: aczadance.org or 877338-2420.

SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12. 2017

Out & About | 17


SUKKOT FARM-TO-TABLE FESTIVAL Sunday, Oct. 8, noon to 4 p.m.

Celebrate the Festival of Booths at this Jewish festival featuring chef demonstrations, garden workshops, craft beer garden, live music and kids’ activities. Free, and open to the community. Food available for purchase. Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta-Zaban Park, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Info: atlantajcc.org or Rabbi Glusman at 678-812-4161.


Sunday, Oct. 15, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., VIP event noon to 1 p.m.

The Chattahoochee Nature Center holds its sixth annual outdoor food, live bluegrass music, craft beer and wine event to raise funds for CNC’s Unity Garden, which supplies more than four tons of fresh produce annually to the North Fulton Community Charities food pantry. Garden tours and games. All ages. 9135 Willeo Road, Roswell. Ticket info: chattnaturecenter.org.



Saturday, Oct. 14, 10 a.m. to noon.

Kids can learn about planting bulbs for spring and growing them in containers in sunny windows. Each participant takes home a container of bulbs planted in this family gardening program presented by Heritage Sandy Springs. Best suited for ages 6 to 10 with accompanying adult. Free. Heritage Sandy Springs Farmers Market, 6100 Lake Forrest Drive, Sandy Springs. Info: heritagesandysprings.org. Continued on page 18

18 | Out & About

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Continued from page 17


Saturday, Oct. 14, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Meet local health and wellness providers at an event featuring fitness demos, health presentations, kids’ activities and healthy snacks. Free. Presented by Sandy Springs Perimeter Chamber’s Health & Well-Being Council. North Springs United Methodist Church, 7770 Roswell Road, Sandy Springs. Info: Sarah Galambos, sarahhmas@gmail.com.


The “Sandy Springs Reads” program is gearing up for its sixth annual October event where residents are encouraged to read and discuss the same book. This year’s book is the 2013 bestseller “Gaining Ground: A Story of Farmers’ Markets, Local Food, and Saving the Family Farm,” a memoir by Virginia farmer Forrest Pritchard. The program’s companion book for young readers is “Fresh-Picked Poetry: A Day at the Farmers’ Market” (2017) by Michelle Schaub. Events revolving around the chosen books will be announced. “Sandy Springs Reads” is a collaborative program of Art Sandy Springs, the Sandy Springs Education Force, Friends of the Sandy Springs Library, Los Ninos Primero, Altrusa International, the Abernathy Arts Center and the Sandy Springs Branch of the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System. Info: artsandysprings.org.


Saturday, Oct. 7 to Sunday, Oct. 8, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

See famous aircraft, take plane rides, meet World War II veterans and noted authors and visit with war reenactors in the fourth annual Atlanta Warbird Weekend at DeKalb-Peachtree Airport. The Weekend’s 2017 theme is African-American pilots from World War II to the present. Free. Parking: $15, cash only. On Saturday at 7 p.m., hear original Tuskegee Airmen veterans share their stories in a dinner event at the 57th Fighter Group restaurant. Dinner tickets: $149. 2000 Airport Road, Atlanta. Info: atlantawarbirdweekend.com or 404-913-2635.



Atlanta native Lynne Bird discusses her memoir on being a “Georgia Peach” at Heritage Sandy Springs. Free. Garden Room at the Williams-Payne House, 6075 Sandy Springs Circle, Sandy Springs. Info: Melissa Swindell, mswindell@heritagesandysprings.org or 404-851-9111 x2.

Saturday, Oct. 14, 11 a.m. to noon.

Master Gardener Richard Osterholtz explains how to build and repair raised garden beds at the next Dunwoody Community Garden & Orchard edu-session at Brook Run Park. Free. Refreshments served. Meet at the DCGO greenhouse complex opposite the skate park at Brook Run, 4770 North Peachtree Road, Dunwoody. Info: dcgo.org.

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SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12. 2017


Out & About | 19

DISCOVER NATURE LECTURE SERIES: BATS! Sunday, Oct. 15, 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Learn about bats common to this community and how you can help save them from a potentially extinction-causing disease. Bat box installation tips and sunset bat viewing over the gardens. Ages 6 and up. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Lost Corner Preserve, 7300 Brandon Mill Road, Sandy Springs. $5 individual; $10 family. Info: 770-206-2035 or registration.sandyspringsga.gov.


With so many things to do, we suggest getting an early start on your want-to-do list.


Saturday, Oct. 7, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

The 14th annual Vintage Affair brings together top local restaurants, fine wines, music and live and silent auctions in the largest annual fundraiser for the Community Assistance Center, which has helped neighbors in need in Sandy Springs and Dunwoody since 1987. Holy Innocents’ Episcopal Church, 805 Mount Vernon Highway N.W., Sandy Springs. Ticket info: vintageaffair.org.


An evening of local food, live music and dancing observes the market’s 10th anniversary. All proceeds benefit the market, located at The Cathedral of St. Philip, in Buckhead. Hyatt Regency Atlanta, 265 Peachtree St. N.E., Atlanta. Ticket info: prfm10thanniversary. brownpapertickets.com.



There’s a lot to do at The Piedmont Retirement Community — clubs, events, socializing, and more. So, go ahead and make your want-to-do list. But please don’t include a bunch of chores. We’ll take care of most of those for you. We invite you to see all that The Piedmont has to offer (including assisted living services if needed) at a complimentary lunch and tour. Please call 404.381.1743 to schedule.

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20 | Community

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GPB CEO discusses education programs at Sandy Springs chamber


Left, Teya Ryan, CEO of Georgia Public Broadcasting, with Jan Paul, GPB board chairperson, executive director of Leadership Sandy Springs, and wife of Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul, at the Sandy Springs Perimeter Chamber luncheon Sept. 13.

BY EVELYN ANDREWS evelyn@reporternewspapers.net

As the Sandy Springs Perimeter Chamber of Commerce hosted representatives

from all public Sandy Springs schools at a Sept. 13 luncheon, Teya Ryan, CEO of Georgia Public Broadcasting, spoke about how GPB has furthered its “educational mission” in the last few years by producing

interactive textbooks and games. “I’m really honored to have so many educators here because what we do is really for you,” Ryan said. Educators and administrators from local public schools set up booths in the Westin Atlanta Perimeter North hotel, where the luncheon was held. Jan Paul, the GPB board chairperson, executive director of Leadership Sandy Springs and wife of Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul, introduced Ryan at the lunch. Jan Paul has served on GPB’s board of directors for 14 years and served on the search committee that hired Ryan as CEO. In introducing Ryan, Paul said GPB’s education division is what she is “most proud of.” Also at the luncheon, Tara McGee, principal of Woodland Elementary, spoke about her school becoming the 16th elementary school in the state to be designated a STEM school with the help of the Sandy Springs Education Force, a group that works to improve local public schools. While most people know GPB provides radio and television across the state, many are not aware it provides significant educational materials and programming to public schools, Ryan said. Since becoming CEO in 2009, Ryan has worked with her team at GPB to produce

This is Weber.





404-917-2500 x117



more educational materials, saying airing educational shows is not enough to further GPB’s education mission. One of those programs included a live-stream discussion with biologists at Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary on the Georgia coast. More than 45,000 students and teachers viewed the video and submitted over 1,000 questions, Ryan said. The audience included students and teachers from Ridgeview Charter Middle School in Sandy Springs. The live stream was planned to last half an hour, but was extended to an hour and a half due to the number of questions, Ryan said. “It was an astonishing experience,” she said. GPB’s educational efforts are provided through digital media because children have grown up with digital media, understand it and are motivated to use it, Ryan said. “Our children are digital media natives. They are completely absorbed, good or bad, in their digital world,” Ryan said. One of the first education projects GPB worked on was the production of the Georgia history books used by all eighth graders at public schools in the state. GPB transformed it into an interactive digital book with original videos, which schools in Fulton County use, she said. Printed copies of the book cost schools $100 each, but digital copies are made free to the public through federal funds and grants. When the book is updated, schools using the digital version only have to download a new version instead of buying new copies, Ryan said. “The beautiful part of this is it doesn’t take $100 a book to update it,” Ryan said. The use of the textbook initially stagnated, and Ryan found the release was “one step ahead” of digital media knowledge among teachers. “We assumed these very busy teachers had time to go and learn how to use digital media. We were wrong in that assumption,” Ryan said. GPB hired two educators and sent them across the state and to many metro Atlanta schools to educate teachers on using digital education tools. Since then, the use of the digital book has more than doubled, Ryan said. They will be visiting schools again this year to educate more teachers, she said. “The education side of what we do is now the highest-trafficked part of our website. It used to be TV, so it’s changed dramatically,” she said. GPB is considering producing university books because the cost of textbooks is often a barrier for students, she said. The education division at GPB has also created 40 “elaborate” interactive lessons, games and virtual “field trips” for free use by schools and the public. For more information visit gpb.org/education.

SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12. 2017

Classifieds | 21


Reporter Classifieds SERVICES AVAILABLE


Matthew’s Handy Services – Small jobs and chores are my specialties. Shelves, organizers, carpentry, drywall, painting, and plumbing. Member of BBB – 404-547-2079 Email: mwarren8328@gmail.com.

Piano Lessons – Looking for piano lessons? Affordable lessons for ages 4 & up. Serving Dunwoody, Roswell, and Sandy Springs. Call 770-367-0024. www.facebook. com/keys4soul

Driveways & Walkways – Replaced or repaired. Masonry, grading, foundations repaired, waterproofing and retaining walls. Call Joe Sullivan 770-616-0576.

Piano Lessons in Your Home – lessons for all ages, levels & styles. Call Kimberly Izor 404-444-8440 or www.pianolessonsforyou.net

Home Tending – Regular inspections of your unoccupied property…”0n market or just away”. Call Charles at 404-229-0490. Handyman Services – Moving and Delivery too! Local owner – call 803-6080792 Cornell Davis.

LOT FOR SALE Lovely, level Dunwoody Lot for Sale in “Sellars Farm”. 134’ frontage and 178’ deep. Call 770-512-3463 or 770-394-3604

Kebensa Math Tutoring – Honors Algebra, Honors Geometry, Honors Algebra 2, Trigonometry, Honors Pre-Cal or AP Cals AB/BC. Single & Group rates --- in-person or online. Better grades guaranteed! Call 678-641-8871 or email: keithsawyer@ bellsouth.net.

To Advertise, call 404-917-2200 ext 110

Drivers Wanted Senior Services North Fulton, a non-profit organization, has an opportunity for drivers in their transportation program. If you live in the Sandy Springs or Roswell area of north Fulton, would like to earn some extra money, set your own hours, like to drive, have a car, and like to be of service to seniors, please contact Mobility Manager at

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Arlington – Sandy Springs – 1 lot, Garden of Cross. Retail $3,995 – asking $2,000. 4 lots, Section A w/2 vaults. Retail $19,000 – asking $10,000. 404-402-6253. Arlington Memorial Park – Sandy Springs - Beautiful, Pine crest section, Plots 11B, spaces 3 & 4. Arlington staff will be happy to show plots. Call 973-714-2499.

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22 | Community

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Sales tax boost could raise $47M for city projects

City probes incorrect apartment inspection notices





Brookhaven voters go to the polls Nov. 7 to help decide whether to impose a countywide special local option sales tax that could add another $47 million to the city’s coffers over the next six years. At a Sept. 19 special called meeting, the City Council voted unanimously to enter into an intergovernmental agreement with DeKalb County to show support for the referendum on the proposed Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, or SPLOST. Brookhaven’s share of the increase in the sales tax — to 8 percent from 7 percent, if it is approved — would be slightly more than $47 million over six years. The council agreed that $15 million would go toward public safety facilities and equipment; $14 million would go toward road pavement management; another $11.1 million would be used for transportation improvements; and $7 million would go to maintenance of existing capital assets. The county decides how much each incorporated city receives based on 2016 population numbers. Specific projects on where the money will be spent will be determined later, but state law requires most of the money go toward transportation. DeKalb County also is asking the cities to kick in extra funding to cover Fire and Rescue Department costs, but Brookhaven has not yet decided if it will do so. The council also approved as part of the agreement the authority to issue general obligation bonds up to $34,295,000 over the six years of the SPLOST. The amounts of the bonds approved are $5.5 million for 2019; $5.59 million for 2020; $5.67 million for 2021; $5.755 million for 2022; $5.845 million for 2023; and $5.93 million for 2024. But before the SPLOST kicks in, voters must also approve another ballot measure that would replace the Homestead Option Sales Tax (HOST) with an Equalized Homestead Option Sales Tax (EHOST) to put all homeowners in cities and unincorporated DeKalb on equal footing, according to county officials. If the SPLOST is approved, DeKalb would receive $388 million over six years and nearly 60 percent of that total is to go toward transportation projects, with $151 million for road resurfacing, according to DeKalb CEO Michael Thurmond. Money would also go toward new fire stations and police cars as well as renovations of parks, libraries, senior centers and health centers. “This is a transformational moment for DeKalb County,” Thurmond said in a prepared statement. “The county and its 12 cities are in agreement on a plan to work together for all of DeKalb citizens. With the support of the DeKalb legislative delegation, which passed enabling SPLOST legislation earlier this year, we will be able to improve the quality of life for all residents.” State Sen. Fran Millar (R-Dunwoody) worked with Thurmond on the SPLOST bill so that the sales tax increase would not be tallied on food. Millar’s bill also prohibits any money going to MARTA.

Updated SPLOST Six-Year Figure Sept. 8, 2017 Estimated SPLOST Distributions based on 2016 Census Population Estimate (Rounded to 3 decimal places)


2016 Population Estimate

2016 Percentage Distribution

Avondale Estates Brookhaven Chamblee Clarkston Decatur Doraville Dunwoody Lithonia Pine Lake Stone Mountain Tucker Stonecrest (DMA figure) DeKalb County

3,150 52,444 28,306 12,742 22,813 10,501 48,884 2,082 762 6,328 35,322 53,071 431,250

0.445% 7.411% 4.000% 1.801% 3.224% 1.484% 6.908% 0.294% 0.108% 0.894% 4.991% 7.500% 60.940%



Source: DeKalb County

6-Year SPLOST Total (April 2018March 2024) Updated Estimate $

2,833,592 47,190,458 25,470,494 11,468,090 20,529,218 9,449,554 43,987,543 1,872,082 687,704 5,692,656 31,780,809 47,757,176 388,042,978

$ 636,762,352

A city spokesperson said this flier handed out to residents at Park Town North apartments wrongfully stated the city would be conducting inspections.


A flier warning a local apartment complex’s tenants of government inspections was incorrect and “predatory” and could drive a wedge between the city and the Hispanic community, a city spokesperson said. The manager of the Park Town North complex said the inspections claim was a “misprint.” Management at the complex on North Cliff Valley Way issued the fliers Sept. 18 to residents. The fliers stated in English and Spanish that the city would be conducting unit-by-unit inspections to check for occupancy limits. “Attention all residents: On Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017, the city of Brookhaven will be conducting unit-by-unit inspections,” the flier states. “The city of Brookhaven implemented an occupancy limit based on the square footage of bedrooms … The inspector will be counting mattresses as proof of number of occupants as well.” The flier said that city code limits occupancy to a maximum of two people per bedroom. The flier also states the maximum number for a two-bedroom unit is four people and the maximum number for a three-bedroom unit is six people. Those numbers in the flier are wrong, said city spokesperson Burke Brennan. City code states no more than three non-related people can occupy a household. “There is no household limit on related persons,” he said. “We ardently request that anyone who receives information to the contrary to contact us and let us know.” Brennan said the city does not go door-to-door to conduct interior inspections of apartments. The insinuation the city did so only erodes the trust the local municipality is trying to build with its large Hispanic population, he added. Brennan said he has asked the city police department to investigate. “I don’t know if it is against the law or not. I sent [the flier] to the Brookhaven Police Department to make a determination on that,” he said. “But it’s predatory and it’s wrong. We are trying to build bridges into our rather large Hispanic population and this is destructive toward that purpose.” Lula Allen, manager of the complex, said the flier was in “reference to city code” and the claim the city would be conducting the inspections was a “misprint” by her staff. “The letter was in reference to Brookhaven code,” Allen said. “The inspector was certified by the city of Brookhaven that we hired to ensure code compliance. “I was unaware of the flier going out. My staff put out the flier. It was a misprint,” she said. Brennan questioned Allen’s statement. “If it was an isolated incident, I’d give it the benefit of the doubt. But this is the second one of these I have seen,” he said. “The other one was another complex entirely. Different complex. Different management. Same ‘misprint,’” he said. “A very specific misprint which leverages cultural mistrust of government to ensure compliance for apartment inspections.” Allen said the complex conducts an annual inspection of the apartment units and during this inspection one-third of the units, or 162 apartments, were inspected. She said two apartments were found to not meet code. She said no residents were evicted. Some maintenance issues were also discovered during the inspection and Allen said management is working to repair any issues. The flier included a statement that the locks were changed so management could have access to the units. Allen said the locks were changed “some time ago” after many residents installed their own locks on doors and also on bedroom doors. “We went back over the years and put our own locks … because that’s how it’s supposed to be,” she said. BK

SEPT. 29 - OCT. 12, 2017

Public Safety | 23


Police Blotter / Brookhaven From Brookhaven police reports dated Sept. 16 through 23. The following information was pulled from Brookhaven’s Police-2-Citizen website.

Sept. 17, in the early morning a man was arrested and accused of simple battery.


2900 block of Buford Highway — On

4000 block of Peachtree Road — On

Sept. 16, at midnight, items were stolen from a vehicle. 2800 block of Clairmont Road — On

Sept. 16, a theft was reported. 1000 block of Barone Avenue — On

Sept. 16, in the afternoon, a burglary to a residence was reported. 3600

block of Buford Highway — On Sept. 16, in the afternoon, a burglary to a home was reported. 3900

block of Peachtree Road — On Sept. 16, at night, a car was entered. 3000

block of Clairmont Road — On Sept. 16, at night, a burglary to a residence was reported. 3800 block of Buford Highway — On

1800 block of Bri-

On Sept. 17, in the early morning, a battery incident took place.

arwood Road — On Sept. 20, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of driving without a license.

2500 block of Brookhaven View — On Sept. 21, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of simple assault.

1300 block of North Cliff Valley Way — On Sept. 23, after midnight, a woman was arrested and accused of family violence charges.

Sept. 18, after midnight, a burglary took place at a residence. 1100 block of Haven Brook Court —

On Sept. 19, in the evening, items were stolen from a car.

A S S AU LT 2000 block of Curtis Drive — On Sept.

16, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of family violence. 2900 block of Buford Highway — On

Sept. 16, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of simple battery. 2200 block of North Druid Hills Road

— On Sept. 16, at night, a battery incident took place. 3100 block of Buford Highway — On

2900 block of University Parkway —

On Sept. 20, in the afternoon, a man was arrested and accused of failing to appear. 2000 block of North Druid Hills Road

— On Sept. 20, in the evening, a man was arrested and accused of driving without a license. 2800 block of Buford Highway — On

Sept. 20, at night, a man was arrested and accused of disorderly conduct. 1800 block of Dresden Drive —

On Sept. 20, at night, two men were arrested and accused of driving without driver’s licenses. 2600 block of Buford Highway — On Sept. 21, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of failing to appear. 2500 block of Ellijay Drive — On Sept. 21, in the afternoon, a wanted person was located. 3200 block of Buford Highway — On

Sept. 22, in the early morning, a woman was arrested and accused of marijuana possession.

Community Briefs

ARRESTS 3100 block of Buford Highway — On

3100 block of Buford Highway — On

3000 block of Woodrow Way — On

3700 block of Buford High-

2100 block of Havenwood Trace —

3800 block of Peachtree Road —

Sept. 17, at night, items were stolen from a car.

Sept. 19, in the evening, a wanted person was located.

Sept. 17, at night, a verbal dispute took place.

2900 block of Clairmont Road — On

Sept. 16, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of possessing less than one ounce of marijuana.

4400 block of Peachtree Road — On

3800 block of Peachtree Road — On

way — On Sept. 19, at night, a woman was arrested and accused of making terroristic threats and acts.

Sept. 17, in the evening, parts were stolen from a car. On Sept. 17, in the evening, a theft occurred.


Sept. 17, in the early morning, two men were arrested and accused of simple battery.

tion and consumption.

Sept. 16, in the evening, a woman was arrested and accused of obstruction and interference.


Mayor John Ernst will host town hall meetings on Oct. 26, Nov. 16 and Dec. 21. All meetings will be from 7 to 8 p.m. at City Hall, 4362 Peachtree Road in Brookhaven. The town halls will cover different topics to be determined. An open forum question and answer session with Ernst and other city department managers will follow.

3200 block of Buford Highway — On

Sept. 17, in the early morning, a woman was arrested and accused of theft by receiving stolen property. 2600 block of Buford Highway — On

Sept. 17, at night, a man was arrested and accused of violating his probation. 3300 block of Buford Highway — On

Sept. 18, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of public intoxication and consumption. 3600 block of Buford Highway — On

Sept. 18, in the afternoon, a man was arrested and accused of driving without windshield wipers. 1400 block of Dresden Drive — On

Sept. 19, in the afternoon, a wanted person was located. 3800 block of Parkcrest Drive — On

Sept. 19, in the evening, a man was arrested and accused of public intoxica-

B O YS & G IR LS C L UB P R O P ER T Y R EZO NI NG TO B E C O NS IDER ED O C T. 4 The rezoning of the Boys & Girls Club approximate 6-acre property on North Druid Hills Road to make way for a townhome development goes before the Planning Commission on Oct. 4. The meeting is at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 4362 Peachtree Road N.E. Ashton Atlanta Residential LLC, a subsidiary of Ashton Woods, is seeking to rezone the property from R-75 (single-family residential) to RM-100 (multi-family residential). RM-100 would allow Ashton Woods to build 12 units per acre, and the current site plan comes in right under that 11.9 units per acre. The site plan also calls for 74 units with vehicular access from Sylvan Circle and a rear fire access road from Briarwood Road. Each of the townhomes is proposed to be 3,000 square feet and have a maximum of four stories. The Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club is trying to sell its property to move to another location the organization owns about four miles away at 2880 Dresden Drive in Chamblee. Representatives of the Boys & Girls Club say the Chamblee site would allow the organization to serve more children. The sale of the property is contingent on the rezoning.

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