Voters in parts of Atlanta from Downtown to East Lake have a choice for their District 5 City Council seat this year: a veteran of City Hall or a first-time candidate. City services and the cost of housing top are top issues, the candidates say.
In 1993, the need for affordable housing was so great that the Atlanta City Council created a Housing Commission to recommend solutions; the commission evaporated. Now, a pending proposal would revive the commission and charge it with meeting the challenges of this era.
By Guest Columnist DAN IMMERGLUCK, a professor in the Urban Studies Institute at Georgia State University
In the book, City on the Verge, author Mark Pendergrast points out some of the challenges that the Atlanta BeltLine and the rest of Atlanta face in terms of housing affordability. He argues, for example, that the City should adopt mandatory inclusionary zoning, with a sliding scale to address the truly impoverished, as soon as possible in order to address the problem of declining affordability.
The crowd at this Sunday’s Atlanta Streets Alive won’t get to meet many political candidates. Just 21 of more than 100 candidates for Atlanta City Hall and Atlanta Board of Education have applied to participate, including just three of 13 mayoral candidates, according to the event’s website on Friday afternoon.
Parts of Atlanta from Downtown to Little Five Points are going to get a new City Council member in an election this year that’s attracted more than $200,000 in donations, and talk about affordability, homelessness, taxes and planning.
As Atlanta city officials look to revamp the city’s tree ordinance, Trees Atlanta is hosting more than 100 folks at a conference where they are slated to hear practical advice on how to become effective advocates for the city’s tree canopy.
Gov. Nathan Deal has appointed Atlanta’s chief of road and transportation construction projects to the board that oversees GRTA, which advises on Xpress bus service in metro Atlanta and authorizes state and federal spending on transportation in metro Atlanta.
Last year, Atlanta voters approved new sales taxes to pay for transportation and transit builds. This year, mayoral candidates are talking about what they would do in a city that’s raising cash, is predicting a lot of new residents and that aims to attract big employers.
As a discussion of Confederate monuments drew to a close Sunday at Emory University, a moral aspect of the removal debate was voiced: “If we don’t deal with it, if we decide this isn’t worth our time to deal with it, we concede the field to white supremacists.”