To the editor:

For several decades, the citizens of Sandy Springs wanted to be rid of governmental control by Fulton County. It was promoted by responsible parties then that forming the city of Sandy Springs was in the best interests of the community.

In essence, the city would be the shining star with a responsive government, local control of issues and outsourced services that would be cost effective, especially when compared to the tired, old model of government that is draining public coffers with public service cutbacks the daily norm. That was then.

This is now: records have been broken at the number of zoning variances approved, the number of new apartments and developments already constructed, the number of mixed-use developments planned but not yet online, the massive State Farm complex, the planned Mercedes Benz complex at Abernathy Road, the imminent approval of Glenridge Highlands III, a high-rise office addition to North Park, the planned 50-story office building, along with a 5,000-car garage at Mount Vernon and Ga. 400, a 300-room hotel at Peachtree Dunwoody/Abernathy.

And, the recent approval of hundreds of apartments at Roswell Road/Hammond Drive, as well as hundreds of apartments at Roswell Road/Hildebrand with no concerns for traffic congestion.

Glenridge Drive has the largest undeveloped tracts of land in the city and that, too, will be all lost as a result of the new and improved government put into place in 2005. Whether office buildings, mixed-use developments, residential homes and apartments built with the highest densities, the city has broken all records for development. This is exactly what the citizens of Sandy Springs in 2005 did not want and still don’t want. If local control is not in the power of the citizens of the city, why did we vote for it?

The city and its representatives tell us that all will be fine because traffic will not be affected and that many workers will utilize MARTA, shuttles and bike paths instead of cars. This is truly hogwash. All the while, commuters from the surrounding areas choke the roads in Sandy Springs each day, with the added component of new local residents in the new developments using the old roads.

The city needs truly effective and bold leadership on these highly significant issues. Continuing with the same old way is not working. Tell the seven elected men in Sandy Springs that you are tired of this. Enough is enough.

–Rick & Lisa Shunnarah

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