Author: Reporter Newspapers

Council approves Glenridge parking deck

By Katie Fallon katiefallon@reporternewspapers.net Despite a majority of objections from residents, the City Council has approved a two-story parking deck for an existing Glenridge Drive business. The move came in a three to one vote, which was a lower vote ratio than normal due to the absence of District 6 Councilwoman Karen Meinzen McEnerny. The site plan includes the deck being built at 5416 and 5424 Glenridge Drive, which already contains applicant Alpha 7 LLC’s two office buildings. The property, which is located about 780 feet from the Roswell Road intersection, is bordered by the Glenridge Drive post office to the west, an oncology office to the east on Glenridge Drive, single family homes on Tall Oaks Drive to the north and the Willow Glen townhomes to the south. Alpha 7 was actually seeking a three-story parking deck, as well as a number of modifications and concurrent variances regarding buffers, setbacks and landscaping strips. City staff recommended conditional approval. At three stories, the deck would have included 75 parking spaces, but at just two stories, it will only include 50 spaces. Several residents spoke in opposition to the project at any level and cited as justification the city’s recent land use votes in its Comprehensive Plan process. Those designations, however, are not legal yet and cannot be considered in rezoning applications until the state approves the Comprehensive Plan. “It’s...

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Library master plan shortchanges city; No new library, major facility changes slated for Sandy Springs

By Katie Fallon katiefallon@reporternewspapers.net Sandy Springs has only one public library for its residents, and it appears that one library is not a top priority in the county’s library facility master plan. “The master plan does not include any increase of facilities for Sandy Springs, despite our having one of the highest circulation patterns in the entire (Fulton County) library system,” said Mayor Eva Galambos, expressing her disappointment about the master plan proposals. Since September, the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System has been holding public input meetings to share the results of the group’s systemwide master plan. The meetings, which will continue to be held throughout the county into the month of November, are revealing the plan’s conclusions about which libraries need to be replaced, which need to be expanded and which need renovations. The master plan, which was developed by the Sizemore Group, recommends the construction of 10 new library facilities, a major expansion and improvement of the Auburn Avenue Research Library and a complete renovation of the Central Library. It also calls for basic renovations and improvements at 27 existing branches, including the Sandy Springs Library. Some of the new libraries will replace existing branches. The library system held its Sandy Springs meeting on Oct. 3 at the regional library on Mt. Vernon Highway. Led by the system’s Branch Services Manager Anne Haimes, the meeting drew members of...

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Brushstrokes amateur artists group offers support, advice for its members

By Kathleen V. Poe Suzanne Engel always knew she was artistic; she just never knew she could paint. The retired interior designer discovered her latent talent seven years ago when she took her first lesson. She’s painted nearly every day since, in an upstairs bonus room in her Sandy Springs home that she converted into a private studio. The walls here display more than a dozen oil paintings, primarily landscapes in earthy greens accented by the occasional red barn or yellow flower, reinterpreted from Engel’s own digital photos. Leaning against various pieces of furniture are probably twenty canvases more, but they don’t all belong to her. As founder of the Sandy Springs-based Brushstrokes Artists group, on this particular day Engel is the point person collecting paintings to be donated for a silent auction. Brushstrokes began life in 2001 as a handful of amateur painters getting together to talk shop. It has since evolved into a tight-knit, exclusive group of 16 members who meet every five weeks to discuss and critique each other’s works with a goal of artistic growth, both individual and communal. Many of Brushstrokes’ members, who range in age from 35 to 68, submit their art to juried shows, and some even headline local galleries. But not one of these artists is a painter by profession. In fact, like Engel, a lot of them only started painting...

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Two teachers receive Science Award

Two local teachers have received the Siemens Science Teacher Award, which recognizes exceptional middle and high school, public and private school, science educators who go the extra mile to motivate and inspire their students. Rochelle Lofstrand Hamby from North Springs Charter School of Arts and Sciences in Sandy Springs and Frankie Long from Sutton Middle School in Buckhead are one of 10 teachers who were presented a trophy during a special awards ceremony held at the Fernbank Museum on Oct. 3. Sponsored by the Siemens Foundation and in partnership with the Fernbank Museum, the first green-inspired Science Teacher Awards highlight environmental stewardship, a message at the core of Fernbank’s programming. A number of teachers have participated in Fernbank’s UrbanWatch Atlanta Initiative, an environmental education program that trains students and teachers to conduct biodiversity inventories in their local greenspaces while providing an unparalleled opportunity to observe and engage with their surroundings. Other teachers were selected by their county science coordinators for their dedication, initiative and...

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Greenfield Academy student gets class to brighten Rosh Hashanah for soldiers

By Katie Fallon katiefallon@reporternewspapers.net As families across the country deal with loved ones’ wartime deployment, one local nine-year old recently encouraged her classmates to help brighten the Rosh Hashanah holiday for her father and his fellow Jewish soldiers. Adele Stolovitz, a student at Greenfield Hebrew Academy in Sandy Springs, is lucky because she gets to talk to her father Gary nearly every day via telephone, video phone or email. An anesthesiologist in the Army Reserves, Stolovitz is stationed at Al Asad Airbase in the Al Anbar Province of western Iraq. Adele, however, decided she wanted her dad to have something more tangible to keep him connected to his family at home. To achieve that, she enlisted her classmates in Davida Merlis Graber’s fourth grade Hebrew class at Greenfield to send cards to her father and other Jewish soldiers during last month’s celebration of the Jewish New Year. Now, the class sends greetings to American soldiers in Iraq and Cuba, as well as to Israeli soldiers. Adele said her classmates were enthusiastic to participate because they knew her dad, knew that he was in the Army and that he had been sent overseas. “They liked the idea,” she said. “They felt happy, yet sad because my dad was leaving. Our school is very happy people are going to help the Iraqis.” Adele said he teacher turned the card-making sessions into...

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