Sandy Springs, GA: What it's Like to Live Here

Friendly to families and corporate executives, Sandy Springs is a nice place to live in Atlanta.

Courtesy of Zillow An estate property on 1.46 acres next door to the Dunwoody Country Club.

The city of Sandy Springs is a markedly affluent community covering a 38-square-mile area of North Fulton County, about 14 miles north of downtown Atlanta. The income levels and cost of living in Sandy Springs are well above the national average. With a population of roughly 90,000, Sandy Springs is the second largest city in the metropolitan Atlanta area and is the sixth largest city in the state of Georgia.

Given these statistics one might find it surprising that there are still a lot of great real estate values to be had. There are a lot midcentury moderns hoping not to meet the wrecking ball and many other types of unique architecture, such as Victorian reproductions, and of course your standard traditional brick mansions. You might spend $350,000 for a split-level ranch or $10 million for a sprawling chateau. Houses are usually surrounded by lush foliage making it one of the prettiest neighborhoods in Atlanta, while also providing ample privacy, cleaner air and shade.

One thing you might not know is that Sandy Springs began trying to incorporate itself in 1966. I remember as a kid seeing the "Sandy Springs Unincorporated" signs that dotted Roswell Road, but I never really knew what they meant. Sandy Springs residents campaigned for 40 years to obtain their own government. In June of 2005, an overwhelming 94% of residents voted for incorporation of Sandy Springs and so it came to pass and the government is now autonomous.

So what's it like living in the city of Sandy Springs? It is definitely car-dependent, though there are lots of shopping options and parks all within the city limits and MARTA, Atlanta's transit system, services it. It is a very family-oriented community with children attending prestigious private schools like Brandon Hall and Holy Innocents' Episcopal School as well as top-rated public schools like Heards Ferry Elementary and Riverwood High. Sandy Springs is also close to many of the city's Jewish synagogues and Hebrew schools such as the Katherine and Jacob Greenfield Hebrew Academy, the Weber School and the Greenfield Jewish Academy.

A lot of families settle here specifically for the competitive schools, outdoor activities and sports. However, there are also a lot of singletons around town, many employed by IBM, Cisco Systems and United Parcel Service, which are all headquartered there. Sandy Springs is also home to three major Atlanta hospitals: Northside Hospital, St. Joseph's Hospital and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, comprising 40% of the beds in the city.

Lastly, as it is near the Chattahoochee River and other vast green spaces, residents enjoy the city's many parks and recreation centers. Morgan Falls is a favorite. There are weekend farmers' markets in the spring, summer and fall; lots of good shopping, restaurants and movie theatres. Housing can get scarce but it is a great place to live if you have a solid and steady income.


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