Garden City, Georgia

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Garden City, Georgia
City
The 5000 block of the six-lane Augusta Road with George A. Mercer Middle School and Universal Steel Supply on the left and a local Dairy Queen restaurant on the right
The 5000 block of the six-lane Augusta Road with George A. Mercer Middle School and Universal Steel Supply on the left and a local Dairy Queen restaurant on the right
Motto: "Faith - Fairness - Family - Freedom - Future"
Location in Chatham County and the state of Georgia
Location in Chatham County and the state of Georgia
Coordinates: 32°6′1″N 81°9′54″W / 32.10028°N 81.16500°W / 32.10028; -81.16500Coordinates: 32°6′1″N 81°9′54″W / 32.10028°N 81.16500°W / 32.10028; -81.16500
Country United States
State Georgia
County Chatham
Government
 • Mayor Tennyson Holder
 • City Manager Brian Johnson
Area
 • Total 14.3 sq mi (37.1 km2)
 • Land 13.7 sq mi (35.5 km2)
 • Water 0.6 sq mi (1.6 km2)
Elevation 16 ft (5 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 8,794
 • Density 642/sq mi (247.8/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
31408 31405
Area code(s) 912
FIPS code 13-32048[1]
GNIS feature ID 0331788[2]
Website www.gardencityga.org

Garden City is a city in Chatham County, Georgia, United States. It is located just northwest of Savannah. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 8,794.[3] Part industrial and part residential, the city is home to much of the heavy industry in Chatham County and is adjacent to the Port of Savannah, the flagship operation of the Georgia Ports Authority.

Garden City is part of the Savannah Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Geography[edit]

Garden City is located northwest of the center of Chatham County at 32°6′1″N 81°9′54″W / 32.10028°N 81.16500°W / 32.10028; -81.16500 (32.100372, −81.164965).[4] It is bordered to the southeast by the city of Savannah, to the west by the city of Pooler, and to the north by the city of Port Wentworth. To the northeast in unincorporated land is the Port of Savannah and the Savannah River.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Garden City has a total area of 14.3 square miles (37.1 km2), of which 13.7 square miles (35.5 km2) is land and 0.62 square miles (1.6 km2), or 4.35%, is water.[3]

Demographics[edit]

As of the census[1] of 2010, there were 8,778 people, 3,981 households, and 2,663 families residing in the city. The population density was 601.2/sq mi (232.1/km2). There were 3,704 housing units at an average density of 253.7/sq mi (98.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 49.2% White, 37.4% African American, 0.4% Native American, 1.4% Asian, 0.2% Pacific Islander, 8.9% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 16.7% of the population.

There were 3,392 households out of which 27.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.8% were married couples living together, 20.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.5% were non-families. 29.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.58 and the average family size was 3.12.

In the city the population was spread out with 24.2% under the age of 18, 10.2% from 18 to 24, 28.4% from 25 to 44, 25.4% from 45 to 64, and 11.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35.3 years. For every 100 females there were 101.3 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $37,264, and the median income for a family was $42,905. Males had a median income of $30,509 versus $30,509 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,380. About 15.5% of families and 22.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 40.6% of those under age 18 and 6.7% of those age 65 or over.[5]

Economy[edit]

Located at 701 West U.S. Highway 80, the Savannah State Farmers' Market is one of twelve facilities operated by the State Department of Agriculture and used to support the local economy.
This Georgia Central Railway train transports merchandise at Telfair Road.

Agriculture[edit]

Located at 701 West U.S. Highway 80, the State Farmers Market is a farmers' market run by the Georgia Department of Agriculture.[6]

Business[edit]

Commercial activities are traditionally concentrated near the junction of U.S. Highway 80, U.S. Highway 17 and State Highway 21 (an area once known as Traffic Circle), as well as along Augusta Road (Highway 21), where several long-term-stay hotels, franchise and independently owned fast food restaurants, financial institutions, pawn shops, strip shopping malls, gas stations, car repair shops and automotive retail stores are located. Strip shopping centers include:

Mall Location Year established
Dean Forest Village 1550 Dean Forest Road
Fortune Plaza 622 West U.S. Highway 80
Garden City Office Center 4019 Augusta Road
Garden City Retail Building 4831 Augusta Road 1985
Garden City Shopping Center 5216 Augusta Road 1976
Garden Grove Shopping Center 109 Minus Avenue
High Way 80 Plaza 522 West U.S. Highway 80
Southbridge Commons 1450 Dean Forest Road 2009
Traffic Circle (Twenty One) Shopping Center 309 Main Street
Westside Business Complex 3911 Old Louisville Road
West Side Shopping Center 403 West U.S. Highway 80

Industry[edit]

Garden City's industry is located primarily on its waterfront, as is the case for surrounding communities. The Georgia Ports Authority operates a terminal, located at 2 Main Street. Garden City is also home to numerous trucking and railway companies. Other industries are:

Facility Location Production
GAF Materials Corporation 1 Brampton Road Residential and commercial roofing
Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation 500 Gulfstream Road Jet aircraft
Herty Foundation 110 Brampton Road Research and development, papermaking
National Gypsum 2 Brampton Road Gypsum boards
SemMaterials 14 Foundation Drive Transportation and storage of energy including crude oil, natural gas, natural gas liquids, asphalt and refined products

Industrial rental space is available at locations such as:

Facility Location
Chatham Commercial Condominiums 1101 Chatham Parkway
Lynah Square 1335 Lynah Avenue
Westport Business Park 2509 Dean Forest Road

History[edit]

From the Reconstruction Era until the 1930s, the area was home to three major plantations: Brampton, Givens and Telfair.[7] Garden City was incorporated on February 8, 1939, as "Industrial City Gardens". It received its current name on March 24, 1941.[8][9]

Neighborhoods and housing[edit]

The oldest inhabited section of Garden City roughly corresponds to the triangle formed by Smith Avenue, State Highway 25 (Main Street) and State Highway 21 corridors. Throughout its history, Garden City has significantly expanded westward and southward. It has acquired several residential subdivisions, which include:

Subdivision Approximate boundaries
Central Junction DeLoach Avenue,
Garden City Elementary School,
Old Louisville Road,
U.S. Highway 80
Chatham Villa Groves High School,
State Highway 21 (Augusta Road),
Chatham City Apartments,
Dillard Yard
Rossignol Hill Minus Avenue,
State Highway 21 (Augusta Road),
U.S. Highway 80,
Dillard Yard
Sharon Park Talmadge Avenue,
Old Louisville Road,
Garden City Elementary School,
DeLoach Avenue,
U.S. Highway 80
The Oaks Big Hill Road,
Leone Avenue,
Hawkinsville Road,
Dillard Yard
Wheat Hill Big Hill Road,
State Highway 21 (Augusta Road),
Robert W. Groves High School,
Dillard Yard
Woodlawn Terrace State Road 307 (Dean Forest Road),
Old Louisville Road,
Talmadge Avenue,
U.S. Highway 80

Garden City is home to the following apartment complexes, rental housing units and mobile home parks:

Complex Location Type of housing
Almar Inn & Mobile Home Park 35 Main Street Mobile home park
Chatham City Apartments 4309 Augusta Road Apartment / Rental units
Davis Mobile Home Park Davis Mobile Home Road Mobile home park
Garden City Mobile Estates 4309 Augusta Road Mobile home park
Garden Lake Townhomes 4024 Kessler Avenue Apartment / Rental units
Kessler Point 901 Kessler Court Apartment / Rental units
Plantation Townhouses 112 Denmark Street Apartment / Rental units
Southwynn Mobile Home Estates 217 Main Street Mobile home park
Sunshine RV Park Sunshine Avenue Mobile home park
The Arbors Apartment Homes 4035 Kessler Avenue Apartment / Rental units
Wyndmere Apartments 1326 West U.S. Highway 80 Apartment / Rental units

Politics[edit]

Municipal[edit]

The building that is currently used as the Town Center of Garden City was opened to the public in 2009, under the administration of Mayor Andy Quinney.

Garden City operated under a mayor–council form of government until 2009. It has adopted a council-administrator style, and by 2011 it will replace its seven at-large council members by one at-large and five district-elected ones.[10]

For a list of past and present mayors and council members of Garden City, see List of mayors of Garden City, Georgia.

As of 2010, Garden City has never collected property taxes.[11]

Other levels of government[edit]

Garden City is represented by:

In the last three decades, the area's county commissioners have been:

Inauguration Term expiration 7th district
Commissioner
Party 8th district
Commissioner
Party
1981 1985   James M. “Jimmie” DeLoach[12] Democrat   L. Scott Stell, Jr. Democrat
1985 1989   James M. “Jimmie” DeLoach Democrat   Dorothy Barnes Pelote Democrat
1989 1993   James M. “Jimmie” DeLoach Democrat   Dorothy Barnes Pelote[13] Democrat
1993 1997   Eddie DeLoach[14] Democrat   Dr. Priscilla D. Thomas[15] Democrat
1997 2001   Eddie DeLoach Democrat   Dr. Priscilla D. Thomas Democrat
2001 2005   Dean Kicklighter[16] Republican   Dr. Priscilla D. Thomas Democrat
2005 2009   Dean Kicklighter Republican   Dr. Priscilla D. Thomas Democrat
2009 2013   Dean Kicklighter Republican   Dr. Priscilla D. Thomas Democrat

Color code:       Democratic       Republican       Independent

State representation[edit]

The Georgia Department of Corrections operates the Coastal State Prison near Garden City.[17][18]

Public education[edit]

Robert W. Groves High School
The Rommel Avenue Catwalk is used by the school kids of George A. Mercer Middle School and other pedestrians to safely cross Augusta Road (State Highway 21).
The Garden City United Methodist Church building is located at 62 Varnedoe Avenue, next to the Senior Citizen Center.
Central Baptist Church
Woodlawn Baptist Church

Three public schools can be found within Garden City limits. They are managed by the Savannah Chatham County Public School System.[19]

School Location Year established Number of students
Garden City Elementary School 4037 Kessler Avenue 1996 575
George A. Mercer Middle School 201 Rommel Avenue 1962 880
Robert W. Groves High School 100 Priscilla D. Thomas Way 1958 1,454

Groves High School - Long known as "the pride of the Westside", Groves High School has a rich community tradition that dates back to its founding in 1958. Established to serve the young people and families of West Chatham County, the school is named for Robert W. Groves, a prominent business and civic leader in the county. Besides his powerful role in business and his many commercial and community activities, Groves took particular concern for the youth of the area and their educational needs.

Groves High School is home of the Fighting Scottish Rebels football and basketball teams. Campus points of interest include the Woodville-Tompkins Annex, where the automotive and construction programs are offered, and the Cumming Field, named to honor Second Lieutenant Britt C. Cumming a World War II veteran who was killed in action.

Mercer Middle School serves grades 6th through 8th and is a part of the Savannah Chatham County School System (SCCPSS).[20] Originally called Mercer Junior High School, Mercer Middle School first opened on September 4, 1962, and was the first climate-controlled school in Georgia.[21] Mercer was named for George Anderson Mercer, an attorney who served as the president of the Board of Education from 1883 until his death in 1907.[22]

Garden City Elementary School was built to serve the consolidated student population of the former Benjamin Sprague and Martin G. Haynes elementary schools.[23]

Religion[edit]

45.08% of Garden City residents are affiliated with religious congregations. Southern Baptists account for 33% of the population that has a church affiliation, Catholics for 20%, and United Methodists for 15%.[24] There is no Catholic church in Garden City. The nearest is Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, located at 501 South Coastal Highway in Port Wentworth. Local houses of prayer include:

Name Religious denomination Current location Year established
Central Baptist Church Baptist 4010 Old Louisville Road
Chapel-in-the-Gardens, Presbyterian Church in America Presbyterian 93 Main Street 1935
Church of Christ of Garden City Non-denominational Christian 4506 Augusta Road 2001
Clifton Baptist Church Baptist 2 Big Hill Road 2001
Dean Forest Baptist Church Baptist 1524 Old Dean Forest Road
Fairlawn Baptist Church Baptist 4719 Augusta Road 1889
Fellowship Assembly of God Pentecostal 5224 Augusta Road 1968
First Baptist Church Baptist 35 Nelson Avenue 1940
First Garden City Seventh-Day Adventist Church Seventh-day Adventist 4020 Second Street
Garden City Primitive Baptist Church Primitive Baptist 126 Smith Avenue 1961
Garden City United Methodist Church United Methodist 62 Varnedoe Avenue 1942
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church Lutheran 41 Main Street
Jasper Springs Baptist Church Baptist 62 Smith Avenue 1942
Living Hope Community Fellowship Non-denominational Christian 5008 Augusta Road 2008
Mount Olive Holiness Church Pentecostal 37 Leone Avenue
Palm Grove Primitive Baptist Church Primitive Baptist 2207 Shaw Avenue
Silk Hope Baptist Church Baptist 4929 Pineland Drive
Trinity Church of God Pentecostal 2202 US Highway 80 West
United House of Prayer For All People Non-denominational Christian 4107 Sixth Street
Woodlawn Baptist Church Baptist 407 Talmadge Avenue 1965
Woodlawn United Methodist Church United Methodist 2502 West U.S. Highway 80
Zion Fair Missionary Baptist Church Baptist 4123 First Street


Services[edit]

The Senior Citizens Center was dedicated in January 1996, under the administration of Mayor Roy L. Crager.
Volunteer Park was dedicated in December 1999, under the administration of Mayor Dean Kicklighter.
The Park at Sharon Park was dedicated in December 1999, under the administration of Mayor Dean Kicklighter, and rededicated in 2004, under the administration of Mayor Andy Quinney.
By 1950, the Eastern Star Masonic Hall, located at 131 Rommel Avenue, was listed in R.L. Polk's Savannah City Directory.
This roadside welcome sign stands at the intersection of Main Street and Burnsed Boulevard.
The geographical reference of this water tower, located at the intersection of Nelson and Rommel avenues, is 32°6′49.7″N 81°9′16.4″W / 32.113806°N 81.154556°W / 32.113806; -81.154556.

Services to the citizens of Garden City include:

Facility Location
Port City Branch of the Live Oak Public Libraries 3501 Houlihan Avenue
Garden City Community & Senior Citizens 78 Varnedoe Avenue

Public parks and recreation[edit]

The Garden City Parks and Recreation Department has year-round programs available for citizens. Youth sports include baseball, girls' fast pitch softball, T-ball, football, cheerleading, soccer, gymnastics and basketball. The city also provides non-team activities such as a summer day camp (Camp Eagle), roller skating, after-school programs, and a center for senior citizens. Garden City is home to five public parks. All are managed by the municipal City Parks & Recreation Department, headquartered at 160B Priscilla D. Thomas Way.[25]

Park Location Primary use Monuments/facilities
Bazemore Park 1 Bud Brown Drive Recreational Baseball complex
Griffin Park 500 Griffin Road Recreational Playground
The Park at Sharon Park 507 Sharon Park Drive Recreational Two playgrounds, gazebo, pond and hiking trail
Town Green 100 Central Avenue Esthetic Fountain and benches
Volunteer Park 5100 Augusta Road (State Highway 21) Commemorative Fountain and benches

Other landmarks[edit]

Other landmarks located in Garden City include:

  • The Air National Guard facility at 1401 Robert B. Miller, Jr. Road
  • Coastal State Prison, located at 200 Gulfstream Road and dedicated on May 12, 1981; it replaced the Chatham Correctional Institution as the local-based state-run correctional facility[26]
  • The Dotson House (the oldest residence in Garden City), built in 1850 and moved from the surroundings of George A. Mercer School to the site of the current town center[27]
  • Fire Department Station No. 1, 160 Main Street
  • Fire Department Station No. 2, 2406 U.S. Highway 80 West
  • The Order of the Eastern Star's local branch, located at 131 Rommel Avenue
  • The county-run Sharon Park Solid Waste Drop-Off Center, located at 50 Kelly Road
  • A statue of baseball icon Babe Ruth, which stands on the front lawn of Babe's Barbeque Shack, 525 U.S. Highway 80 West
  • Hillcrest Abby West Cemetery, located on Dean Forest Road
  • Several roadside welcome signs, posted near the city limits
  • Several water towers
















References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ a b "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Garden City city, Georgia (revision of 09-07-2012)". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved July 21, 2014. 
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  5. ^ "American Fact Finder". census.gov. Retrieved November 26, 2013. 
  6. ^ MB – State Farmers' Markets Alive and Well, Georgia Department of Agriculture website
  7. ^ "City at a Glance", City of Garden City, 2009
  8. ^ Garden City, 50th Anniversary Book
  9. ^ Ed Jackson and Charles Pou, "This Day in Georgia History", Digital Library of Georgia, University of Georgia, 2010
  10. ^ Changes reshaping municipal government in Garden City, Savannah Morning News, March 8, 2009
  11. ^ Charles Cochran, Race seems like musical chairs, Savannah Morning News, October 3, 2003
  12. ^ DeLoach served as Mayor of Garden City in 1973–1979
  13. ^ Dorothy Barnes Pelote resigned in 1990 before the completion of her term of office and was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives.
  14. ^ Eddie DeLoach is the son of James M. “Jimmie” DeLoach.
  15. ^ Dr. Priscilla D. Thomas was elected to complete Dorothy Barnes Pelote's unexpired term and was re-elected to a full term in 1992.
  16. ^ Kicklighter served as Mayor of Garden City in 1998–2000
  17. ^ "City of Savannah Neighborhoods 2008." City of Savannah. Retrieved on September 15, 2010.
  18. ^ "Coastal State Prison." Georgia Department of Corrections. Retrieved on September 15, 2010.
  19. ^ Savannah Chatham County Public School System official website
  20. ^ Mercer Middle School
  21. ^ Garden City 50th Anniversary Book 1989
  22. ^ Garden City 50th Anniversary Book 1989 p 53
  23. ^ Garden City Elementary School
  24. ^ City-Data.com website
  25. ^ Garden City Parks and Recreation Department
  26. ^ Don Lowery, Staff Writer, Officials Dedicate New Correctional Facility, Savannah Morning News, May 13, 1981
  27. ^ Dotson House Restoration Project: Preserving Garden City's History, Genevieve Rogers, The Spirit Newspapers, August 23, 2007

External links[edit]