Small Things Make a Big Difference
By Matthew Gore, Projects and Programs Manager, Buckhead Community Improvement District
CIDs are well known for the large, often transformative infrastructure projects we implement. Those projects are critical to our mission, but they’re not the only thing we do. We also carry out small day-to-day items that combine to make a big difference, even to those who might not notice the details.
These initiatives are typically focused on what we like to call “being intentional.” These are little touches that often don’t get noticed as individual items, but that taken together display the care and work that go into making the CID area an inviting, clean place to live, work and play. They are the small things that we do on purpose, not to stand as individual “wins,” but as part of the larger program of making Buckhead an area we love.
Landscaping is perhaps the largest part of the “being intentional” approach. Buckhead CID funds a landscaping maintenance program that includes regular mowing, weeding, edging and clean-up on the major corridors throughout the CID. In addition, we maintain several flower beds that are rotated spring and fall with seasonally appropriate flowers.
We also maintain the trees along the streetscapes throughout the CID. This means that we monitor the trees for health, both to keep up their aesthetics and to ensure the trees don’t create safety hazards near our sidewalks and roadways.
As part of our tree work, we also periodically trim and “limb up” the trees. This helps keep them looking orderly and prevents them from crowding one another or our roadways and sidewalks, as low-overhanging limbs can make the sidewalks feel uninviting and create safety issues for both pedestrians and motorists.
There are also general maintenance items that come up from time to time, which are too numerous to fully list here, but are still critical to the look and feel of the CID area. Over the last year, this has included everything from repainting light poles to removing/covering up graffiti to addressing small safety issues like missing utility covers on sidewalks. We pride ourselves on reacting quickly to these issues and getting them addressed as soon as possible.
These small things can also complement the big things. For example, Buckhead CID is currently in the process of retrofitting old, failing pavers adjacent to the sidewalks on Peachtree Road from Peachtree Dunwoody to Maple Drive with modern concrete. This is a large, multi-year project, but we noticed a small thing along the way that could be implemented quickly and make it even better. As the new concrete went in along the existing sidewalks, we saw that the existing sidewalks and curbs needed to be freshened up to match the newly installed concrete. To help create a better overall look, the CID pressure washed the sidewalks and curbs on the entirety of the retrofit project, which both improved the existing concrete and emphasized the progress we’ve made replacing the pavers. Pressure washing is a small task, but it was a great way to support the big project – the retrofit.
As you can see, Buckhead CID is active in all sorts of ways, making sure that we help keep up the quality of life we all expect from Buckhead. The last time you walked down Peachtree Road, you probably didn’t stop to individually note the small things – the clean sidewalks, trimmed trees, freshly-painted light poles and flowery medians. However, on some level, you probably did notice the difference – the inviting streetscapes and well-maintained environment that are an integral part of the Buckhead experience.