Author: Reporter Newspapers

One year later, local woman’s death spawns few changes on trail

By Katie Fallon katiefallon@reporternewspapers.net While summer may recall happy times for many, one local family will soon mark a tragic one-year anniversary. On July 25 of last year, Sandy Springs resident Jennifer Ewing was murdered on the Silver Comet Trail while taking her regular, 50-mile bicycle ride from the trail’s Smyrna outpost. That evening, Ewing was reported missing by her husband Jim after she failed to return home from her ride. The following morning, her body was found about 40 feet from the trail at mile marker 17 in Paulding County. At the time of Ewing’s murder, PATH Foundation executive director Ed McBrayer said the crime was the first major incident experienced on the trail. He said the trail is used by a couple million visitors every year. McBrayer said while use of the trail went down slightly in the few weeks immediately following the shock of Ewing’s death, usage today has remained steady and seems to be up since last year, although he said there are no concrete numbers to be sure. “I don’t think there have been any significant changes,” McBrayer said. “Except people thinking twice about going in pairs.” McBrayer said that it is not economically feasible to install lighting or emergency call boxes along the 60-mile trail. He said as tragic as Mrs. Ewing’s death was, he believes it to be an isolated incident that...

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Schenck School expansion to provide better space for more students

By Katie Fallon katiefallon@reporternewspapers.net Though the Schenck School may differ from other elementary schools with its curriculum geared specifically toward dyslexic students, the campus has one thing in common with schools all over the metro area. The need for more room. Schenck, which will now house kindergarten through sixth grade, began its expansion odyssey nearly five years ago and will complete it when the new school year begins approximately two weeks later than normal on Sept. 10. The school’s regular enrollment is only 150 students, but with Schenck’s size now doubling in square footage, it will be able to accommodate 250 students in the fall. Phase one of Schenck’s expansion was completed in May when a completely new building was added to the campus. The new 20,000 square foot facility, which was built on land already owned by the school, includes the new kindergarten, a lunch room, science lab, a library nearly three times the size of the former space and an occupational therapy facility that includes a rock climbing wall and a zip line. The construction of the new facilities was completed during the last school year and as soon as school let out for the summer, the existing building was completly gutted and renovations began under the watchful eye of Silverman Construction Program Management. Located on Mount Paran Road in Sandy Springs, the Schenck School helps its...

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High Point students perform for author

By Katie Fallon katiefallon@reporternewspapers.com While many schools put on spring plays, it is not every day that students get to perform in front of the author of their production. From classics like Romeo and Juliet to Rumpelstiltskin, that could hardly be the case, but a group of High Point Elementary School’s Drama Club students got a chance last month to perform in front of Peter Reynolds, author of “The North Star.” On June 25, the mostly rising sixth graders performed at the National Educational Computing Conference (NEEC). Reynolds was on hand as a representative of FableVision, the company that originally produced The North Star into a musical. The students performed the roles of narrators, characters, chorus ensemble and technical assistants and were led by High Point drama director Stephen Gamba. Before originally performing The North Star Musical Journey for the High Point community in April, students were already familiar with the story, thanks to guidance counselor Jan Waring. PTA member Sally LeSage said Waring previously introduced the book to students when it was released as a musical by FableVision. At that point, LeSage said it seemed only natural to choose the story for the school’s annual musical. The North Star is the tale of a young boy trying to find his way through life. With the help of various animals, the boy is able to find his way after...

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Mixed-use development planned in redo of Lakeside office park

By John Schaffner Atlanta-based Greenstone Properties and Met Life plan to redevelop the aging 26-acre Lakeside office park on Glenridge at the northwest corner of the intersection of Ga. 400 at I-285 with a mixed-use development. The proposed development would include two 14-story office towers, a 200-room hotel, 300 condominium units and 50,000 square feet of retail space. Greenstone Properties and Met Life recently bought the Lakeside office park for more than $60 million. The site presently contains five two-story buildings and large surface parking lots. According to reports from the developers, the two-story buildings will be torn down and replaced with the two 14-story buildings, the “business class” hotel and a four- or five-story condominium building. Parking decks would be built to serve the needs of the entire development. Papers for the project were filed with the state July 9 and the project will have to be reviewed by the Atlanta Regional Commission and Georgia Regional Transportation Authority. The property will have to be rezoned to allow for mixed-use, but the plan reportedly fits with the Sandy Springs land-use plan. Greenstone recently developed Newell Rubbermaid’s new headquarters in the Perimeter Center area of Sandy...

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Business briefs

Avistele opens community center Sandy Springs Mayor Eva Galambos was on hand July 2 to assist with the ribbon cutting to open Avistele Lifestyle Communities’ newly renovated community center at Avistele at Andalusia, a 312-unit apartment community at 225 Franklin Road in Sandy Springs. The renovated community center accommodates groups up to 30 people, with overflow available onto an outdoor veranda with a view of the swimming pool. Avistele at Andalusia is still in the process of renovating the 312 apartment units as part of a two-year project. “We share a common vision with Mayor Galambos and the City Coucil, namely making Sandy Springs an amazing place to live,” said Howard Primer, president and CEO of Renaissance PG, the owner of Avistele Lifestyle Communities. “Avistele is all about elevating apartment living to a new standard of excellence,” Primer continued. “We redeem the buildings and the land so that people can take pride in their homes and neighborhood.” Primer told the group at the ribbon cutting ceremony that Avistele “was founded to fill a gap in modern life: not knowing our neighbors. Because we don’t know our neighbors, we are less courteous to each other, less civically involved and a huge part of our emotional and spiritual lives is not being nutured. “Our teams have one mission: transforming apartment complexes into true communities, where neighbors can become friends,” he added....

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