Emory Report
August 28, 2006
Volume 59, Number 1


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August 28, 2006
Druid Hills purchase keeps it green

BY David Payne

Emory is buying land—to keep it green.

Buying the site at 1164 Clifton Rd. provided an unexpected opportunity for the University to secure a heavily wooded property on the edge of Peavine Creek.

The property measures approximately 1.2 acres and is significant due to its location as a gateway to both Druid Hills and Emory. In its preserved state, the property will provide an environmentally friendly, aesthetically pleasing transition between the residential homes in Druid Hills and the commercial district in Emory Village.

Emory anticipates working collaboratively with the Druid Hills Civic Association (DHCA), DeKalb County and the Clifton Community Partnership (CCP) to preserve the large lot as green space. Plans for the site should be finalized early next year. In fact, to signify the partnership, the DHCA will participate in the purchase.

“This initiative to preserve the site is the direct result of the Clifton Community Partnership,” said Mike Mandl, executive vice president for finance and adminstration.

“Emory’s strategic plan calls for creating a community-engaging society and for encouraging sustainability initiatives tied to Emory,” said Bryan Cooke, the CCP’s new executive director. “The CCP’s engagement with other community groups and the preservation of green space serve both goals under the strategic plan.”

The CCP recently named more than 20 local civic, community and business leaders to its advisory group, who will represent the greater Clifton area in efforts to improve the quality of life surrounding Emory.

The CCP is interested in encouraging the vibrancy and vitality of local commercial activity centers, and that can certainly include enhancing the green space around those centers, Cooke said. “We look at this purchase and preservation effort as supporting the positive plans to improve Emory Village by maintaining a key entrance to the Village.”

Added Cooke, “Keeping this site in a natural state is consistent with the desires of Bill and Madeline Burbanck, the previous owners. It acknowledges their contributions to both Emory and Druid Hills.” Bill Burbanck was the former chair of Emory’s biology department.