Live Work Play Marietta

By Chris Norris
Harry Norman Commercial Division

Editor’s Note: When we launched Marietta Magazine key business owners reached out to share their love for Marietta with us. The team at Harry Norman - Cobb Marietta offered to write a column providing uplifting content each issue about Marietta life as loved by those who know best.

Revitalization of cities like Marietta through mixed-use, carefully planned development has enabled them to regain their independent city identities - no longer just a “suburb of Atlanta.”  

IN THE LAST ISSUE, WE FOCUSED ON the amazing recreational opportunities our community offers.  Now let’s talk about the meat and bones of life…the working and the living.  One of the hottest national real estate trends in the past 10 years has been mixed use development.  By definition, mixed use means that commercial real estate and residential real estate are placed in close proximity to each other.  Like most great ideas it is a copy of an older idea with some new lingo attached to it to make it sound fresh.

In the early 1920s Americans began to expand into the suburbs and flee city living.  For our region that meant Marietta ultimately went from a vacation destination to the suburbs and then it just kept growing on and beyond Marietta.  For example, in 1971 Perimeter Mall opened and by 1986 much of the Cobb retail relocated to the new Town Center Mall and there was no retail or much life at all left on the Marietta Square.

Since then there has been an amazing revitalization of the Marietta Square and other smaller cities around Atlanta.  Our cities have regained their identity and escaped the “suburbs of Atlanta” moniker.  The reason for that is that our great city and others like it in the area are live, work, play mixed use developments, just like the new developers try to create all over the metropolitan area.

One of the great things about Marietta is the fact that one can live and work within miles of each other and not waste time commuting long distances.  The primary appealing factor of mixed use is that you can live in one location and spend very little time getting to work.  Then you get home from work you can get your dry cleaning, eat dinner and get groceries without getting back out in traffic.

Marietta is again a thriving city with its own identity and there are many people who make that happen.  Some of the great small businesses that help make our city so special are run by your neighbors and you might not even know it.  When you start to think about your next opportunity to go out or patronize a business consider your neighbor as they really are close by.  They help make our city the great place it is to live and work.

If you need any help finding a house in the city call any of our professionals at Harry Norman, Realtors®. If you want to open a business in Marietta call me, Chris Norris, as I’m the head of the Harry Norman Commercial Division.  I live and work in Marietta too!

Importance of Keeping Historic in Marietta

MARIETTA IS A FANTASTIC PLACE TO work, and play. There are excellent restaurants, unique shops, great galleries and museums, and charming historic neighborhoods. More people are visiting and moving to Marietta every day. They are drawn to the things that make Marietta truly unique, and whether people realize it or not, one of the biggest draws is Marietta’s historic buildings. The paradox is that the more popular Marietta becomes, the more our historic buildings are threatened by redevelopment.

Marietta has recently seen the loss of several beloved landmarks, most noticeably the Fowler House and an original Brumby Chair Company cottage, both located on Church Street. As construction of new homes, offices, restaurants, and retail space increases, so does the threat of demolition for historic buildings. So, how do we encourage growth while preserving what makes us unique?

In recent years, Marietta’s Historic Preservation Commission has worked tirelessly to establish local historic districts throughout Marietta’s residential neighborhoods. The districts help define Marietta’s historic neighborhoods and identify “contributing” or “historic” structures located in those neighborhoods. Those properties are then protected by regulations similar to covenants used in modern residential developments. The regulations help to maintain the historic look and feel of the structures, and help safeguard the buildings from demolition.

Downtown, historic preservation can be a great way to encourage developers and businesses to find creative ways to reuse old buildings. For example, Glover Park Brewery recently opened just off of the Marietta Square on Atlanta Street. Rather than construct a new building, they chose to rehabilitate a derelict 1930s Sears, Roebuck and Company building, which had been significantly altered through the years and was at one point gutted by a fire. They restored the period brick facade and added historic character back to the interior spaces by using reclaimed materials and fixtures.

Marietta is a wonderful community, and I have no doubt it will attract new residents and businesses in the future. We just need to remember that our historic buildings deserve to be preserved for those future generations to enjoy.

Image: Marietta's 1920s Fowler House was demolished on March 15, 2019.

Publisher's Post - Premier issue!



This is intended to be a statement - the confident answer to the question, “Where are you from?” or “Where do you live?”  Marietta.

Hi!  I love harvest time, don’t you?  We’ve been working all summer to get this premier issue to press, and we are so excited to get to share it with everyone!  My name is Nicole Shea, and I live in this wonderful city of Marietta, also once referred to as “The Gem City,” with my husband and two kids.  I am new to the magazine business, but have a heart for getting to know the stories behind the fabulousness of this town.  

Who are we?  What is our vision for this new publication?  We are a group of local writers, graphic designers, photographers, foodies and Marietta-lovers who are on a mission to help small communities thrive.  To stay true to our name, we have a few rules - boundaries:

1.  We will only write about Marietta people, places and things.  If it doesn’t have a Marietta address, it won’t really fit our mission of being a local lifestyle magazine just for Marietta.

2.  We aren’t concerned with incorporated or unincorporated boundary lines or outdated ways of differentiating between north, south, east, and west Cobb - if you have a Marietta address then we think you’ll connect with our magazine.

3.  We’re not a newspaper, and we won’t try to be because we wouldn’t be very good at it.  We will focus on sharing the greatest local stories about festivals, philanthropy, local entrepreneurs, the arts and theatre, our history, new developments and everybody’s favorite:  food and drink.

Our promise to you...to be interesting, creative and optimistic.  We hope you enjoy reading all about Marietta and what makes it such a GEM!

The November/December issue will be packed with our local holiday favorites, so be sure to subscribe TODAY!  


Nicole Shea