Springtime shines on the Atlanta BeltLine
By Barrett Coker Krise, senior philanthropic officer, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta
Spring has sprung and that means Atlantans are flocking outside to enjoy what our city has to offer. And I’m among them with my family. I’ve developed a recent obsession with the Atlanta BeltLine. It’s possible that it’s because I live in Cabbagetown. The BeltLine will run across the top of my street, less than two blocks from my house, and I’ve been avidly watching the construction.
It’s possible that it’s because I was born here, as was my mother, and her mother, and this is one of the most ambitious urban redevelopment projects in the nation. It’s possible that it’s because Atlanta is dotted with unique and exciting neighborhoods and there’s nothing like a grounds-eye view to really experience them. And of course in my work at the Community Foundation, I’ve followed its development from a philanthropic perspective.
While the book has been out for a while, I recently picked up a copy of City on the Verge by Mark Pendergrast because I wanted to know more about the project. I’d heard the basics – that it was Ryan Gravel’s thesis while at Georgia Tech and that it utilized the unused rail beds ringing the city. But I was curious to hear more about how the BeltLine went from idea to implementation, and what it means for the future of our city. City on the Verge captures all of that and ties it to the history of Atlanta. It helps you understand how this project is uniquely suited to this place we call home. I invite you to grab a copy and hit the BeltLine to see our city as it was meant to be seen – at the human level. Learn more about the book here.
The Community Foundation has a monthly book club where our staff reports on books of interest to our work. Read more on our blog.