Sandy Springs Reporter
Reporter Newspapers Small Business of the Year, 2013
Holiday home cooking Local cooks share their favorite recipes HOLIDAY FOOD 14-16
An ‘awesome place’ Shepherd Center’s compassionate care MAKING A DIFFERENCE 10-11
DEC. 12 — DEC. 25, 2014 • VOL. 8 — NO. 25
Holiday horsin’ around
Council authorizes condemnations for City Center BY JOE EARLE
trict.” He added that experts have told city officials there is actually too much retail in the corridor. “We’re trying to figure out a good, healthy mix,” he said. Ground is being cleared at the corner of Hammond and Roswell Road for One City Walk, where developers Kaplan Residential and George S. Morgan Development Co. are planning 204 high-end, high-rise apartment units and just
Sandy Springs city officials have taken steps toward acquiring the final pieces of property they need for the proposed new City Center. Members of Sandy Springs City Council voted Dec. 2 to authorize condemnation, if necessary, of properties at 237 Johnson Ferry Road and 6201, 6215 6219 Roswell Road and 260 Mount Vernon Highway for use in the City Center. City Attorney Wendell Willard said after the meeting that the properties would complete the city’s planned assemblage of land for its project. The city plans to construct a $46 million building that will include a performing arts center, city offices and meeting spaces. The surrounding area will include parks, a parking deck and privately-developed homes, restaurants and shops. The total project is expected to cost about $196 million. The council voted unanimously to authorize condemnation of the Johnson Ferry Road property, which houses a Goodwill Industries store. The city has offered $3.9 million for the property, but the owner has declined to sell, Willard said in a memorandum to council members. The council divided 5-1 on whether to authorize condemnation of the other properties, which are located in a triangle of land bordered by Roswell and Johnson Ferry roads and Mount Vernon Highway. The city has offered $3.407 million for the property, Willard said in a memo, but the owners refused the offer. During the council’s Dec. 2 meeting, lawyer Christopher Galanek said the property owners were convinced the land was worth more. “We will fight any valuation less than $5 million,” he said. Galanek said the property’s owner wanted
SEE IS A NEW CITY, PAGE 4
SEE COUNCIL, PAGE 5
Sisters Olivia, 6, and Elena Vega, 9, enjoy horseback rides at North Springs United Methodist Church on Dec. 7. The rides were part of Christmas tree sale festivities on the church lawn. Brothers Austin (front) and Bailey Pinto handled the horses, which were provided by their parents, Joelle and Danny Pinto. More photos on page 22.
Mayor: ‘We’re trying to ﬁgure out a good, healthy mix’ on Roswell Road BY ANN MARIE QUILL
With one mixed-use development under way along Roswell Road near the future City Center and another in the pre-planning stages, Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul says that the right mix of retail needs to be found to make it all work. Describing the City Center project as the “catalyst” to help redevelop the area, Paul said “what we’re trying to do is create a healthier environment for our central business dis-
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