The long-awaited new downtown and heart of Sandy Springs is a central community gathering place that brings together civic, cultural, retail and residential amenities.
City Springs, dedicated May 7, was developed as a public-private partnership between the City of Sandy Springs, Selig Enterprises and Carter & Associates. It was based on a master plan created in 2012 with much input from the community itself, according to Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul.
“The vision was that Sandy Springs did not have a city center,” said Steve Selig, president and chairman of Selig Enterprises. “There was really no focal point for the city or community. I think that this development will serve that purpose. It’ll not only be a place for city government, but a gathering place for people who live and visit.”
City Springs is made up of a 14-acre triangle bounded by Roswell, Mt. Vernon and Johnson Ferry roads. The address of the city building, 1 Galambos Way, is a tribute to Eva Galambos, the Jewish pioneer who played an important role in the decades-long effort to attaining cityhood for Sandy Springs. She was its first mayor from 2005 to 2014.
The complex has a variety of functions and venues. The five- story City Hall houses nearly all of the offices of the Sandy Springs government, most of which relocated from the Morgan Falls center. Many of the building’s third floor meeting and conference center rooms are available for community use by reservation, including an outdoor area called City View Terrace, which is soon to feature a water wall. Special rates are available for non-profit groups. City Hall’s lobby offers both open and private areas with tables and seating that can be accessed by anyone any time the building is open.
Byers Theatre, an 1100-seat state-of-the art Performing Arts Center, is the true “showpiece” of City Springs, said Selig, adding, “It’s absolutely beautiful.” The theatre will host a 10-event performance series, including dance, theater, music and comedy in addition to a speaker series. It’s also the home of the City Springs Theatre Company and a new collaborative initiative making arts education and programming accessible to people of all backgrounds.
The Performing Arts Center’s inaugural season kicks off with a 12-day celebration in early August and includes a concert by the Branford Marsalis Quartet on Aug. 11 and a film, “Heading Home: A Tale of Team Israel,” presented by the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival on Aug. 19.
Studio Theatre, located between City Hall and Byers Theatre, is a 5,000-square-foot multi-functional space that can be used as a black box theater or entertainment venue. Or its 250 seats can be literally rolled back and the room reconfigured to accommodate meetings or other events.
Outdoors, City Green is a four-acre park with shade trees and interactive fountains. It’s the new location for the Heritage Sandy Springs Farmers Market on Saturday mornings, spring through fall.
As a mixed-use development, in addition to the city-operated building, City Springs also has a residential component consisting of 275 flats and 19 townhome apartments, along with about 28,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floors of those buildings.
“We focused on restaurants, food, exercise and health as gathering places for people” when selecting the retail tenants, said Selig Chief Operating Officer Jo Ann Chitty, who served as one of the primary project managers.
Mayor Paul is thrilled about the potential that City Springs has in creating community in Sandy Springs. “The aspiration is to have enough kinds of different events here in this area that every resident of the city will find something that they absolutely, positively can’t miss at least once or twice a year.” For more information, visit www.citysprings.com.