Monthly Archives: May 2007

Downtown Master Plan open houses

Thursday, May 24, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4-6 p.m.
Via the City of Savannah Web site:

The Savannah Development and Renewal Authority (SDRA) and the City of Savannah, in conjunction with the Chatham County-Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission, will hold a public presentation of the findings, preliminary strategies and recommendations for a Downtown Savannah Master Plan.

The public is also invited to two open houses on the Master Plan recommendations on Thursday, May 24, also at the Desoto Hilton. The drop-ins will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4-6 p.m. The public is invited to talk with the consulting team and offer feedback. 

Over the past year, a number of public meetings, focus groups and work sessions have been held with the business community, neighborhood residents and civic organizations to provide input into the process and shape the creation of a master plan for downtown Savannah. The study focused on issues related to economic opportunity, housing, quality of life, mobility and development. The process has been led by the consulting team of Kise, Straw and Kolodner; Urban Partners; McMillan and Associates and Sottile and Sottile. In addition to the City of Savannah, the Downtown Neighborhood Association, Tourism Leadership Council and Historic Savannah Foundation provided financial support for this important effort.

For more information, contact SDRA Executive Director Lise Sundrla at 912.651.6973 or Savannah Public Information Director Bret Bell at 912.651.6410.

Downtown Master Plan presentations

Wednesday, May 23, 6:30 p.m.
Via the City of Savannah Web site:

The Savannah Development and Renewal Authority (SDRA) and the City of Savannah, in conjunction with the Chatham County-Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission, will hold a public presentation of the findings, preliminary strategies and recommendations for a Downtown Savannah Master Plan at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 23, at the Desoto Hilton Atrium on Liberty Street.

Over the past year, a number of public meetings, focus groups and work sessions have been held with the business community, neighborhood residents and civic organizations to provide input into the process and shape the creation of a master plan for downtown Savannah. The study focused on issues related to economic opportunity, housing, quality of life, mobility and development. The process has been led by the consulting team of Kise, Straw and Kolodner; Urban Partners; McMillan and Associates and Sottile and Sottile. In addition to the City of Savannah, the Downtown Neighborhood Association, Tourism Leadership Council and Historic Savannah Foundation provided financial support for this important effort.

Stanley Lowe, vice president for community and neighborhood revitalization for the National Trust for Historic Preservation, will give the keynote address before Wednesday’s presentation. He will speak on the importance of a healthy and vital downtown.

The public is also invited to two open houses on the Master Plan recommendations the following day, Thursday, May 24, also at the Desoto Hilton. The drop-ins will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4-6 p.m. The public is invited to talk with the consulting team and offer feedback.

For more information, contact SDRA Executive Director Lise Sundrla at 912.651.6973 or Savannah Public Information Director Bret Bell at 912.651.6410.

Recycling center grand opening

Wednesday, May 23, 10 a.m.

Via the City of Savannah Web site:

Mayor Otis Johnson invites the public to a grand opening of the City’s new Recycling Complex, to be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 23.

The complex, located at 14 Interchange Court off West Gwinnett Street, includes a recycling education center and drop-off facilities. It will be free and open to all residents, regardless of whether they are City residents. The complex will accept a variety of recyclable materials, including aluminum cans, steel products and scrap metals, plastics, and white good such as washers, dryers and stoves.

The complex’s education center will provide printed materials about recycling, landfills and other sanitation topics; information on recycling projects and programs within the City; as well as displays and exhibits. Group and school tours will be offered upon request.

More information, here.

Rising gas prices: Do we really care?

Savannah Morning News reports gas price increaseIn October 2005, when gasoline prices soared above $3.00 per gallon, I noted few changes in the motoring habits of my fellow citizens. The local TV news operations camped out at filling stations to harvest B-roll of disgruntled customers filling their tanks. When they had the chance to speak on camera, most suggested that “something needed to be done,” and that the high prices were “unbelievable,” “ridiculous” and even “criminal.” Nonetheless, folks still swiped their cards, took fuel onboard and sped off just as they’d done when a gallon cost $2.00.

Now, two and a half years later, we are witnessing a replay. And nothing much has changed. Yesterday I observed a man sitting in his idling Oldsmobile while he waited his turn at a walk up ATM. When the time came for him to execute his transaction, he left the car running. All told, the car idled for perhaps 10 minutes. This is not behavior indicative of a person who’s concerned about gasoline prices.

People who drive everywhere are still driving everywhere. How high will fuel prices have to rise before Savannahians consider transportation alternatives? What’s the magic number that would result in more Savannah Morning News newspaper racks being blocked by bicycles?

Safe Routes to School program worshop

Thursday, June 28
Savannah Civic Center  Bryan Room

Via the Georgia Department of Transportation:

The Georgia Department of Transportation is offering workshops on the Safe Routes to School Program.

The SRTS workshops are intended to inform schools, parents, teachers, local governments, elected officials and other interested groups about activities and sources of funding available to create safe places for children to walk and bike to school.

In addition, the workshops will introduce and provide to participants the new Georgia Safe Routes to School Guidebook.  The training is targeted to potential applicants for Safe Routes to School program funds.  The SRTS program will offer an intensive half day (3.5 hour) training workshop and a one and a half hour (1.5 hour) evening workshop.

The day workshop will provide a comprehensive and interactive overview of SRTS as well as the benefits, basic components of developing a SRTS program in your community. (Bring your walking shoes because we will be conducting a mini walking assessment outside, weather permitting) The short evening workshop will be a general introduction to SRTS, its benefits and the basic components of a SRTS program.  For more detailed information about the SRTS program and to register on-line for the FREE workshop, visit http://www.dot.state.ga.us/srts

The SRTS program assists elementary and middle schools, along with local stakeholders, to create safer places to walk and bike to school.  It is a comprehensive program that includes activities in five areas:

  • Evaluation
  • Engineering
  • Education
  • Encouragement
  • Enforcement

For more information contact:

Adrienne Gil
State Safe Routes to School Coordinator
Georgia Department of Transportation
2 Capitol Square, SW
Atlanta, GA 30334
Phone:  404-656-2005
Fax: 404-463-4379
E-Mail:  adrienne.gil@dot.state.ga.us