Monday, May 16, 2016

Rezoning/SLUP proposal for Blackmon/Scott Blvd [Community Meeting: June 1]

MANA has received a Rezoning and Special Land Use Permit (SLUP) notice pertaining to lots at the Blackmon Drive and Scott Blvd. intersection. This rezoning proposes a 5-story Marriott Hotel.

There are several concerns about this proposal. We urge our community to attend the meeting scheduled for June 1, 2016, 7pm, at the North Decatur Unived Methodist Church, 1523 Church Street.

Rezoning and SLUP proposal: properties highlighted in pink are located at  1602 Scott Blvd. and
2488, 2482, 2464, 2470 & 2476 Blackmon Drive. Medlock Rd, Blackmon Drive and Scott Blvd. highlighted in yellow.

Rezoning and SLUP notice

Thursday, May 12, 2016

BioBlitz (biology, botany, geology) event @ Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve [May 21]

On Saturday, May 21, the Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve will host an all-day BioBlitz sponsored by the Georgia Geographic Alliance.


8AM – Adult Guided Hike – Birds – Led by Dave Butler (bring your binoculars!)

930AM – Sign-in Open

10AM – WELCOME TO BIOBLITZ w/ morning refreshments
Independent data-collecting using iNaturalist begins for the day!
Family-friendly Guided Hike – Birds – Led by Simon Kline (bring your binoculars!)

11AM – Family-friendly Guided Hike – Herpetology - Led by Dr. Michael Black

12PM – Family-friendly Guided Hike – Macro-invertebrates - Led by Dr. Amy Reber

1PM – Family-friendly Guided Hike – Forestry - Led by Trees Atlanta

2PM – Family-friendly Guided Hike – Bugs - Led by Brandon Claridge & Gregory Dash

3pm – Family-friendly Guided Hike – Geology of CSNP’s Rocks – Led by Georgia Rocks

330PM – Music by The Low Hanging Fruit with beer provided by Wild Heaven

5PM – That’s a wrap folks!

(All guided hikes start at the pavilion so meet your guide there! Remember your sunscreen and insect repellent!!)

To register as a participant, go to

If you are interested in volunteering to help at the BioBlitz, visit

Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve
2580 Pine Bluff Drive
Decatur, GA 30033

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Traffic map

As part of the new development at the corner of Church St. and North Decatur Rd., to include a "365 by Whole Foods" as well as other shops and apartments, the developer (The Shopping Center Group) has included a traffic map (pdf) for the Decatur area.

Below is a close-up of our area, to help us in future discussions about this important topic. The red arrow points to the site; the yellow tabs highlight retail in the area. You can see some of our other posts on traffic by clicking on these links:

-  North Decatur Road Safety Audit

-  Clifton Corridor  

Highlight with location of Medlock neighborhood; modified from

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Community Meeting for Church Street / North Decatur Rd. development [date tba: late May]

Yellow dots *roughly* outline the site, which is bound by N. Decatur Rd., Church St. and Milscott Dr.
Map via Google; click to enlarge.
As most have heard by now, the site at the old Naley car dealership (Corner of North Decatur Rd. and Church Street) is being redeveloped. Whole Foods Market's interest in the site was announced last March, and this week we learned that the store will be in the new "365 by Whole Foods" format.

The 18-acre development will also include restaurants, retail, greenspace and apartments. The 365 website lists the store's adress as 1609 Church St. Business Insider summarizes what to expect from this new concept.

Both S.J. Collins Enterprises [the project's developer], and staff from Commissioner Barnes Sutton [the site is in District 4] have reached out to the DeKalb Cross-Neighborhoods Council. The Council wanted to update the community that a meeting is being scheduled for late May and details will be shared as soon as they become available.

Update: Some views and more detailed plans, such as the views below, are now available at the developer's website.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Whole Foods 365 lands on Church St.

The Atlanta Business Chronicle reports that the Whole Foods announced for the North Decatur Road / Church Street intersection will be one of their new 365 stores. According to the Whole Foods website, the 365 concept is all about a "modern, streamlined design with innovative technology and a carefully curated product mix will offer an efficient and rewarding way to grocery shop.” Smaller than the full-size Whole Foods stores, 365 would offer "healthy, high-quality food at great prices." This is the first 365 store announced for Georgia.  365's press release for this location can be found here.

Update II: Business Insider outlines how 365 stores differ from typical Whole Foods stores.

Update III: Decide DeKalb Development Authority approved $1.8 million in tax incentives for this development. Over the 10 years of the agreement, the property is expected to generate "about $8.9 million in tax revenue for county and school system governments".

Update IV: The following renditions (left, below) have been made available via The Shopping Center Group, which will be in charge of this development.

Update V. The NY Times has an item on the 365 concept. And so does the LA Times.

Update VI (4/15/2018): Now officially dubbed North Decatur Square, the AJC lists additional tenants as follows:
Previously announced: Avalon Nail Spa, Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar, Club Pilates, gusto!, Wood Fire Grill, Hollywood Feed, Regions Bank, Sage Dental and Takorea.
Newly announced: Big Peach Running Company, Bishops Barbershop, Deka Lash, Carriage CleanersCold Stone Creamery, Comcast, Jason’s Deli, Oh Shi Poke, Tin Drum Asian Kitchen and Allstate.

A visit to the developer's website reveals an updated layout of the development.
Click to enlarge; from
Update VII (4/26/2019): Per Decaturish, SJ Collins is trying to either sale this development for $55 million or start a financial partnership with another entity.