Sandy Springs has followed the lead of other cities in the metro Atlanta area, passing several new laws to allow the sale of beer growlers.

The city council on June 5 approved three ordinances related to growlers – the trendy glass jugs that are used to package craft beers typically only available on draft.

The first ordinance will allow the businesses to sell growlers on the condition that they do not sell liquor or gasoline.  The second allows beer tastings, stipulating that the businesses cannot profit from offering samples. They can only provide free samples to customers or host charity events.  The third ordinance provides for the sale of growlers in restaurants that already hold alcohol licenses.

Following a brief debate, the council unanimously approved the three ordinances.

“It’s not often I get to combine my loves of the law and beer,” said Councilman Chip Collins.

Councilman Gabriel Sterling said he has heard of four businesses that are interested in opening up growler stores in Sandy Springs. Sterling has also expressed interest in opening a growler store, though not in the city.

Sandy Springs follows the city of Dunwoody, its neighbor to the east, in opening the door to growler sales. Several other nearby cities, including Marietta, Decatur and Avondale Estates, have also updated their code to allow growlers.

Most cities wrote the regulations for alcohol licenses before small craft beer became popular, according to Dunwoody Mayor Mike Davis, who is himself a home brewer. Many craft breweries are too small to bottle and distribute their beers and sell them only by the keg. Growlers are a way for people to bottle those less common varieties of beer and take them home.

The council also discussed the city’s sidewalk master plan during its June 5 work session.  The sidewalk projects on the list were prioritized based on a scoring system that includes factors such as roadway classification, evidence of pedestrian activity and cost.

The council agreed to complete the first three projects on the list: sidewalks from Mt. Paran Road and Long Island Drive to Roswell Road; from Powers Ferry Road and Old Powers Lane to Dudley Lane; and from Happy Hollow Road and Spalding Drive to Dunwoody Club Drive.

The council members agreed that they wanted to move ahead with the list of projects as is.

“I’m comfortable with the fact that you have all these different criteria. I like that you are looking at all these things,” said Mayor Eva Galambos.

The council also agreed that connecting parks with sidewalks is important.

“I do think people look for a place to go run,” said Councilwoman Dianne Fries. “I do think we should connect our parks. I think we should connect our parks for bicycles, too.”

Council members stressed that they want to provide pedestrians access to businesses.

“It’s the residential areas that are the most underserved,” said Councilwoman Karen Meinzen McEnerny.