The latest Decatur Focus announces that the new hotel on Clairemont is on its way…
Downtown Decatur is getting another hotel. Anyone who has tried to book a room recently at the Decatur Marriott Courtyard knows how frequently it is full. Decatur’s proximity to downtown Atlanta, Emory and CDC, easy access to the Atlanta airport on MARTA and the ability to walk to a number of local retail and restaurant options continue to attract a growing number of visitors to our city.
The new 132-room Hampton Inn and Suites will allow Decatur to host more medium-size conferences at the city-owned conference center. The conference center has enough meeting space but there aren’t enough available hotel rooms to allow it to be used to its full capacity. Building permits for the new hotel have been approved and construction should begin this month.
City arborist Kay Evanovich worked closely with the hotel owner to arrange to have 17 trees relocated from the hotel site to Glenlake Park. Next time you visit the park, look for the new grove of trees located in the upper area of the park near the soccer field.
As announced of Monday, Decatur’s new tree ordinance is now the law of the land.
There are many changes to the ordinance, but the first one to be aware of is that you now need to register tree removal with the city by applying and receiving a free permit. You can apply for a permit online HERE.
The city’s dedicated webpage on the new ordinance contains a lot of info on the intricacies of the new ordinance, but here’s their high-level summary…
According to the Tree Canopy Conservation Ordinance, property owners in residential zoning districts are allowed to remove up to 3 healthy, protected trees during an 18 month period. A tree information permit shall be filed with the City to track the reasons for the tree removal, the amount of tree canopy removed and a plan for replanting if applicable. No recompense or replanting is required if only 3 trees are removed within the 18 month period.
Note that residential zoned properties that are pending real estate sale or title transfer, have been sold or title transferred in the past 18 months, are pending demolition, or have had a dwelling on the site that has been demolished in the past 18 months, are subject to the tree removal permit requirements and must comply with the tree conservation plan required.
Chadwick Stogner writes in…
We finished up the tree planting initiative this weekend, which was very successful for a first year effort with only several weeks of planning.
Due to some conflicts that arose with participants and the Decatur Garden Tour, we scaled back the events over this past weekend and focused on getting root balls in the ground. We are starting to prepare for next years event by tweaking the event schedule and starting earlier. We found most people who bought trees had been planning to plant already, and took advantage of the great selection and pricing that was offered.
We were able, however, to squeeze in several fun tree related events to close out this years festival:
- Lori Nichols, who drew the tree for our logo, read her new book Maple (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqHXHjPPcK0) at Little Shop of Stories and Claremont Elementary School to kick off the week.
- Remember the Black Walnut Tree From Decatur Presbyterian ( http://www.decaturmetro.com/2012/06/08/god-furniture-and-guts-the-treecycling-story-of-the-old-black-walnut-at-decatur-presbyterian-church/) ? Well the wood cured out nicely, and my good friend Charles Gamble made a simple cross from some of the wood for Dr. Todd Speed and his congregation that was presented during their Sunday Morning service.
- Another round of tree recycling was attempted on the infamous White Oak from Melrose Place. Using a 6 foot chainsaw and a portable band saw the wood was quartered and put onto the mill. This old oak was intended to be recycled into rafter boards to restore an historic Decatur house. The wood proved to be almost completely unsuitable for structural or woodworking uses – highlighting the downside of processing urban wood – due to a dry rot and staining from lots and lots of metal imbedded in the trunk over the years.
All and all, we really think a strong foundation has been laid for a quality event that will grow each year, and benefit the Decatur community and our Tree Canopy.
We would like to especially thank our Curators: Deanna Pope-Ozio, Ryan Gainey, Cooper Sanchez, and Cheryl Melton as well as our sponsors: Intown Wholesale Nursery, Heirloom Tree and Garden , Keller Knapp Realty, Elegant Earth, and Fred Boykin – City Commissioner ( District 1 ) – for making this 1st years festival such a success!
See you Next Year.
A reader sends in these pics from the Allen Wilson Terrace demolition site and snarks “Man, if this is the protocol for a TREE SAVE AREA, I’d hate to see what they do in a TREE KILL AREA.”
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