Posts Tagged ‘Decatur’

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Join the Pied Piper Parade as it makes its way through downtown Decatur on Wednesday, July 4. Gather friends and family, ride your bike, walk or skate in this community parade for anyone and everyone. Neighborhoods and organizations are encouraged to make floats and join the fun too. And don’t forget your red, white, and blue!

Parade lineup is at 5:30 p.m. at the First Baptist Church Decatur, 308 Clairemont Ave. Pedestrians will gather on the lawn and vehicles will be lined up by volunteers in the parking lot. The parade begins at 6 p.m.

The concert on the square starts at 7 p.m. in the Community Bandstand, featuring the Callanwolde Concert Band. Fireworks begin at dark (approximately 9 p.m.).

This event is sponsored by the City of Decatur and the Decatur Business Association. For more information, check out http://www.visitdecaturgeorgia.com/see-do-play/special-events/fourth-of-july

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Opening reception is Saturday, February 14 from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. at Sycamore Place Gallery, 120 Sycamore Pl. Entry is free of charge.

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ARC platinum green communities 1.28.15This week, the City of Decatur was one of seven local governments to be recognized by the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) for leadership in implementing policies and practices that contribute to efficient and sustainable use of resources in metro Atlanta.   The city became the first jurisdiction in the 10-county region to achieve Platinum level as a Certified Green Community, the highest certification level. Representatives from the city received its award at ARC’s January board meeting.  ARC recognized the City of Decatur, along with two other cities – Alpharetta and Sandy Springs, and Cherokee, DeKalb, Fulton and Gwinnett counties, which either renewed or upgraded certification in ARC’s five-year-old Green Communities program.

Commenting on Wednesday’s presentation, ARC Chairman Kerry Armstrong said, “The seven local governments the Atlanta Regional Commission recognized today are working hard to use resources wisely and well, and I commend them for their achievements. Their efforts are contributing to cleaner air, reduced water demand, less waste going into landfills and more. As a result, we have a cleaner, greener region.”

After first achieving Green Communities certification at the Bronze level in 2009, and upgrading to the Gold level in 2010, the City of Decatur has renewed its certification at the Platinum level this year, the first local government to reach the highest achievement possible. Some of the actions Decatur took to become certified include:

  • Developing an Environmental Sustainability Plan as direct response to a charge from the people of the city seeking to become even more environmentally responsible. The plan outlines goals and strategies that the city and community should take to deepen their commitment to serving as good stewards of the environment and resources.
  • Expanding the Safe Routes to School program to include all eligible elementary and middle schools in the City Schools of Decatur system along with College Heights Preschool and two private schools. An average of 55 percent of students participate in International Walk and Roll to School Day each year.
  • Committing to building LEED certified facilities, the latest of which, Fire Station No. 1, is on course to obtain LEED Platinum. Sustainable technologies include high efficiency equipment and lighting, green roof garden, a geothermal vertical-closed loop heat pump system, solar water heating, rainwater harvesting and greywater reclamation. The building is designed to achieve a 33 percent reduction in energy consumption and in water usage.
  • Supporting several community gardens with financial and in-kind support. At Decatur’s Kitchen Garden, more than 30 refugee families grow hundreds of pounds of fresh food each season, combating hunger that their families and neighbors face. The produce is also sold at the Decatur Farmers Market and a number of Decatur restaurants.

ARC developed the Green Communities Program to foster greater environmental stewardship and to recognize local governments that invest in programs leading to a more sustainable region. The nationally recognized program showcases the ways in which local governments are helping to transform the region by reducing their environmental footprint. Since 2009, 18 jurisdictions in the 10-county region have been certified. Cities and counties earn Green Communities certification by implementing practices and policies in 10 categories, ranging from energy efficiency and green building to transportation and water efficiency. ARC’s Green Communities program was the first program in the country seeking to transform a region by promoting sustainability through a “green” certification program for local governments.

Complete information about ARC’s Green Communities Certification Program, including the measures each community has implemented, is available on the agency’s website.

The Atlanta Regional Commission is the official planning agency for the 10-county Atlanta Region, including Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry and Rockdale counties as well as the City of Atlanta and 69 other cities.  The Atlanta Regional Commission serves as a catalyst for regional progress by focusing leadership, attention and planning resources on key regional issues.

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willow-school-logo_with-taglineOpening March 2, the Willow School, 141 Sams St., a Reggio Emilia inspired school will offer learning opportunities and care for children ages 3 months through 5 years. The school is offering tours for interested parents on the following dates:

  • Saturday, January 31 at 11:00 am
  • Monday, February 2 at 9:00 am
  • Friday, February 6 at 3:00 pm
  • Sunday, February 8 at 4:00 pm
  • Monday, February 9 at 9:00 am
  • Saturday, February 14 at 11:00 am

The Willow School is currently accepting enrollment applications for its opening day on March 2, 2015.  In addition, the school is enrolling students for the 2015 – 2016 school year beginning in August 2015. Enrollment will be ongoing until all classes are full.

For more information about the school or to inquire about enrollment, email Teresa Cole at willowschoolga@gmail.com.


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It’s official, Google Fiber is coming to metro Atlanta. Google will be working closely with Decatur and other local city leaders on the next steps to build a brand new fiber-optic network capable of delivering gigabit speeds.

“We are here because of the hard work, passion and commitment of the city and its leaders,” said Kevin Lo, Director of Business Operations for Google Fiber. “The next chapter of the Internet will be written at gigabit speeds.”

Google Fiber is an Internet and TV service that provides Internet speeds up to one gigabit per second, along with hundreds of HD TV channels. Google Fiber is currently available in Kansas City, Provo, Utah and Austin, Texas.

“The City of Decatur is thrilled to be one of the metro Atlanta cities that will get connected to Google Fiber,” said Mayor Jim Baskett. “We are a community of homes, schools and places of worship. And we know that Google Fiber’s incredibly fast internet will benefit our community greatly. The entire city looks forward to partnering with Google to make the process of installing Google Fiber as easy and seamless as possible.”

The next stage of work includes designing and planning a new fiber-optic network down to a very detailed level. After this process, which will take several months, Google Fiber will begin constructing the network.

For more information about this announcement, visit the Google Fiber blog.  You can also sign up here and be the first to get updates.

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FAQs from Google

Now that you’ve announced Google Fiber is coming, what happens next?

In order to make the construction of Google Fiber as smooth and speedy as possible, Google will be working with city leaders over the next several months to complete a detailed design of a fiber network — an important step before starting construction, since building a network from scratch is a “measure-twice-cut-once” type of project.

Do you have a date when Google Fiber will start service?

It will take some time before Google Fiber starts signups. In the next several months they will be working with city leaders to design the network. Once there is a detailed plan in place, they can begin initial construction.

You mentioned that the next step is “designing your network”. What does that entail, exactly?

Google Fiber needs to build thousands of miles of fiber throughout the city – but they can’t just put it wherever they want. They take all of the information submitted during the planning process to create a comprehensive plan for building their fiber network. The design helps enable Google Fiber to do construction more efficiently and smoothly once they get going. Some concrete steps they will take during this next phase:

  • Use the infrastructure data that the city has shared to create a map of where they can put fiber (e.g., existing utility poles, conduit) and areas to avoid (e.g., water, sewer and electric lines), as well as the most efficient sequence of construction within the city.
  • A team of surveyors and engineers hits the streets to fill in any missing details. You may see crews out doing detailed surveying work — lots of staring up at poles and even a bit of geological rock-testing.
  • They take this information back to the office and create detailed network design maps, do work with the city to locate network infrastructure and fiber huts, and start to prepare permitting packages.
  • Then they design the network, street by street.

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The City of Decatur’s Design, Environment & Construction Division with support by SAFEBuilt, Inc. will host a 2015 code update training session on Thursday, January 29.

SAFEbuilt, Inc. will provide a training opportunity to the local contractors regarding:

1.       2015 Code updates primarily focused on the National Electrical Code,

2.       Basic Residential Code brace wall provisions focused on the APA prescriptive design,

3.       Basic residential project plan review process and plan set requirements.

This free training session will take from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Leveritt Public Works Building, 1st floor Community Room, 2635 Talley Street, Decatur, GA 30030.

All those who are interested in attending should send an email to Gary Mullinix, Interim Building Official, at GMullinix@safebuilt.com, or sign up in person at the Design, Environment & Construction Division permit counter.

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The City Commission has awarded the contract for construction of Phase V of the Downtown Decatur Streetscape Improvements to the low bidder, GS Construction of Lawrenceville. Construction is expected to start in February.

The project will provide new streetscape improvements in the following areas:

East Trinity Place:          

  • South side only between North McDonough Street and Church Street.
  • Both sides between Church Street and Decatur Fire Station No. 1.

Church Street:      

  • Both sides between East Howard Avenue and East Trinity Place.

The work includes new sidewalks, street trees, lighting and street furniture. When the project is near completion, both streets will be milled and resurfaced.

Depending on the weather, the project will take 9 – 12 months. While there will be some inconvenience throughout construction, access to businesses is to be maintained throughout the project, except for short periods when a sidewalk or driveway is being removed or replaced. The city will have an on-site project manager to answer questions, help with construction issues and provide information about the project.

We appreciate everyone’s patience in finally getting this project started and look forward to a productive 2015.

Phase V downtown Decatur streetscapes Feb2015

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Water pressure appears to be restored throughout the City of Decatur after yesterday’s water main break. Thankfully there was no need for a boil advisory. CSD students returned to school today at the regular time.

The sinkhole on Northern Ave will be fixed by this evening and the road will then re-open to all traffic.


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The January/February Focus has lots of information about upcoming open houses for schools in Decatur. Here’s information about one more:

Decatur First Methodist Preschool and Kindergarten Registration for School Year 2015-2016

 Decatur First Methodist’s Weekday Children’s Ministries includes a Preschool and Kindergarten program located at 312 Sycamore Street. Children ages 2 ½ (3 by December 31) to age 6 may attend our half day program which runs 9 am until 12 noon, Monday through Friday, mid August through May. Optional 12-1 enrichment classes are also available.

Classes offer many opportunities to play and learn while developing readiness for learning academic skills. Special features of the program include:

  • Small child-teacher ratio
  • Large classrooms
  • An outdoor playground
  • A rainy day indoor playroom
  • Music every day for every class
  • A weekly chapel service for the 4’s and 5’s led by the ministers of the church
  • Teachers who attend at least four preschool workshop classes each year, are CPR/ First Aid trained and all have completed a nationwide background check
  • Special programs: storytellers, musicians, puppet shows, Science To Go, Atlanta Gymnastics
  • Field trips to the Decatur Fire Station, Stone Mountain, Georgia Aquarium, Oakhurst Community Garden and more
  • Handwriting Without Tears curriculum
  • Option of extended day from 12 noon until 1 pm on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday
    • Spanish classes with Theresa Taube
    • Art classes with Myrna Hardjono
    • Storytelling Theatre classes with Christy Foelsch
    • Global Kids classes with Kara Campbell
    • Letter Bugs classes with Jessica Dykes
    • Junior Scientist classes with Myrna Hardjono and Kate Pawlicki
    • Yoga classes with Kara Campbell
  • Vegetable garden planted and maintained by the Kindergarten class
  • An active Parent Group with volunteer activities
  • Summer Smiles weekly summer camps

Please join us for an Open House on either Thursday, January 15th or Monday, January 26th from 9:15-10:30 am. Visitors, by appointment, are always welcome to visit our classes prior to the Open House dates. Call Joanne Hauserman at 404-377-5784, e-mail dfumpreschool@gmail.com or visit the website at www.decaturfirst.org.

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A large sinkhole has developed on Northern Ave. in the  southbound lane at the intersection with W Ponce de Leon Ave. It is barricaded and the street is mostly blocked. Drivers cannot exit Northern Ave. onto W Ponce and should use an alternate route such as Montgomery to Fairview. Please avoid this intersection until further notice.

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