Fayette Chamber prepares for move to Cathy’s ‘Waterfall’ center

Chicken and the Chamber — Fayette County Chamber of Commerce Chair Peggy Thomas (L), Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy and chamber CEO Virginia Gibbs (R) were just a few of the people on hand for the Sept. 6 announcement that the chamber offices will be moving to the “Waterfall” commercial center on Grady Avenue and Ga. Highway 54 in Fayetteville. The center was recently purchased by Cathy and will feature a large “waterwall” near the intersection of the two roads. Photo/Gwen Griffin.

The Fayette County Chamber of Commerce is about to get a new home. That home will be located at the “Waterfall” commercial center at the corner of Grady Avenue and Ga. Highway 54 in Fayetteville that was recently purchased by Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy.

Chamber members, elected officials and guests gathered at the Waterfall property on Sept. 6 to celebrate the announcement of the chamber’s new future location and to hear more details about what Cathy said will be a commercial center that will serve as the gateway to Fayetteville.

Speaking at the site, Cathy thanked the community for supporting Chick-fil-A and expressed his desire to give back and make the property a showplace for the community, said chamber President and CEO Virginia Gibbs.

Known initially as The Shoppes at Grady, the retail center was built a few years ago when the recession began but was never occupied. All that changed earlier this year when Cathy purchased the property to house professional offices and a restaurant.

The new restaurant will be located in the portion of the center that is nearest the intersection of Grady and Hwy. 54.

Gibbs said the new chamber office will be located in space along Hwy. 54 at the opposite side of the center and will total approximately 5,200 square feet. That square footage will accommodate the chamber offices, a community room and an upscale cafe area for chamber members, local entrepreneurs, businesses and community representatives to meet, she said.

Chamber offices are currently located in the old courthouse in downtown Fayetteville.

“We had been talking about the capacity constraints we have on the third floor that has a maximum for 70 people. There are so many other events we could do if we had more capacity,” Gibbs said. “We looked at Waterfall and found we could expand our capacity to about 120 people and have a community room.”

The chamber’s move is scheduled for late 2012.

“Truett has made us a part of his vision, and for our role in being able to expand into the community. As we work to support businesses and our community, this space will accommodate our growth and provide the chamber with a convenient location that is easily accessible.” Gibbs said. “It’s a win-win all the way around.”

In addition to the chamber, the Waterfall property will be home to other professional and healthcare services as well as a new Hawaiian-themed restaurant.

Peachtree City-based Group VI is managing the chamber’s construction renovations that are scheduled to be completed later this year. Interior design services are being provided by Sue Mills of Frances Stone Interiors and Beth Anderson of Blue Fox Designs, the chamber said.

True to its namesake, the center will soon see the initial work on the large arc-shaped waterfall to be installed at the corner of Grady and Hwy. 54.

“It will be highly visible and highly recognizable and it’s going to physically improve the property,” project manager Gary Gettis said previously. “The Waterfall center demonstrates Truett Cathy’s desire to make the center a destination and to supply the distinction that will make it a showplace.”

lambchop's picture
Joined: 12/01/2008
new chamber location

I think anything that Truett Cathy does is philanthropic. Looking forward to dining at the Hawaiian themed restaurant. Elisa at www.critter-sitters.com

Robert W. Morgan
Robert W. Morgan's picture
Joined: 10/26/2005
I'm thinking Trader Vic's - remember that?

What a cool place that was back in the day. Mai Tia's, flaming pu pu platters, waiter-type persons in hula skirts, flaming tiki sticks, Don Ho on the the radio, the whole thing. Loved it.

We could use some of that escape in Fayette County right now. Before we go bankrupt.

trsshh's picture
Joined: 11/01/2005

I am glad that he is developing the center, but I wish they had not cut down the old oak tree that had been on the corner for years for his waterfall. I do not think the tree was sick my understanding was there was not enough room for it and the waterfall.

moelarrycurly's picture
Joined: 10/17/2010
Hawaiian theme restaurant

Tiki huts and volcano bowls. How about a beach at the waterfall and a luau at lunch once a week? Down the road, rooftop dining. Now yer talkin'.

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