Crowd Turns Out for Latest Community Meeting on New Downtown

City Walk continues to factor into Sandy Springs' new downtown, as well as making Bluestone Road an attractive walkable road, similar to Roswell’s Canton Street.


More than 100 people rotated into City Council chambers, Wednesday, to get a feel for the latest ideas on Sandy Springs' new downtown.

City Walk continues to factor into plan ideas, and making Bluestone Road an attractive walkable road, similar to Roswell’s Canton Street.

Residents saw informational placards placed about the chambers, while more folks heard a presentation in a separate room by Ben Carlson from master planning firm Goody Clancy.

“People told us, 'We want the City Center to be a place where people throughout Sandy Springs can come, and will be attracted by a whole variety of activities,' ” he said. “They want it to be very accessible. Safe. Walkable; and that means streets with lots of windows facing them.

The planning firm and city staff have focused on mixed-use neighborhoods, new infrastructure that can retain stormwater, creating art spaces, and opportunities for private investment.

The downtown area would likely run along Roswell Road, south from I-285 up to Abernathy Road, including intersections at Hammond Drive, Mount Vernon and Johnson Ferry Roads, and Abernathy at Sandy Springs Circle.

Carlson added, ”Streets like Bluestone, Sandy Springs Circle, and on the east side, Boylston Drive, these are opportunities for walkable areas and the types of investment in buildings and green spaces.”

Surrounding parcels have been assessed and the Goody Clancy folks say that many around Roswell Road are challenging. “You’re probably not going to see redevelopment around there in the near future because a lot of those sites are very successful. There are high-valued uses around them, and other sites are very small and it’s hard to do a lot with them.

The old Target site and City Walk are great opportunities for anchor sites, he said. He echoed what’s been long suggested by the community - the Target site could be green space surrounded by retail and restaurants. And City Walk could be transformed by housing surrounding the shopping center and rearranging retail with connectivity to Bluestone Road, Carlson said.

Several meetings have been held with the community on the new downtown area. Tell us what you think of the vision so far? 

See also:

Sandy Springs Sets Up Downtown Vision and Criteria for Investment

City Walk Starting to Figure Into Quaint Downtown Concepts

Meeting Shows New Downtown Will Bring a Change With the Times

Advisors Say Businesses and Neighborhoods Key to Sandy Springs' Brand

Margaret September 20, 2012 at 10:53 PM
"... He echoed what’s been long suggested by the community - the Target site could be green space surrounded by retail and restaurants." I have attended the prior meetings & when "the public" suggested "green space surrounded by retail and restaurants" I do not think they meant "surrounded" within the site, but by adjacent fronting blocks. All 4 of the proposed schemes utilize 1/4 or less of the Target site for a park green space. All 4 schemes include a large parking deck in the north center of the Target site. Scheme B completely internalizes the park so that is not visible from surrounding streets & the other 3 schemes have it only visible from Mt. Vernon. All 4 schemes propose residential & retail development within the western portion of the site. Two schemes locate the "Civic Facility" within the eastern, Roswell Rd, portion of the site & the other 2 schemes locate more retail there. I believe we need to utilize the existing, controllable, entity of the Target site as the carrot to draw in people & new development & the enhancement of "downtown Sandy Springs" will naturally & economically follow. I do not believe that any of the proposed 4 schemes will accomplish that objective & maintain that utilizing the majority of the site for park green space is the better solution. Please view the proposals at the following link: http://sandyspringscitycenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/2012-09-19_Information_Boards.pdf
wini cox October 10, 2012 at 02:38 PM
Before Sandy Springs can become an attractive area, we need to clear the utility poles and wires on Roswell Road. This looks like an outer space nightmare, with the poles leaning to the left and right. Will they fall on us,we often wonder. Why can't the utilities be underground?


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