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Atlanta at the I-85 Crossroads: A 3,850-square-foot flat screen TV in your face – or not?

By Guest Columnist MIKE DOBBINS, professor of the practice of planning at Georgia Tech’s College of Architecture and former Atlanta planning commissioner

Motorists coming into the city on I-85 southbound toward the Downtown Connector, about 150,000 of them every day, pass on their left a giant wall sign, surmounted by a large sphere. The signs advertise big corporate products, like Comcast, at great profit for the advertising company that owns them. For the 25 years of their existence, with ordinary lighting, most drivers have been able to overcome their distractions and keep their eyes on the road.

Let's build Atlanta as a city, not a suburb

Note to readers: This post contains Instagram videos and images from social media. The article continues below these items within the post.

It’s 2018, and the massive amounts of large-scale developments in Atlanta astound both long-time residents as well as newcomers.

The current pace of development rivals any of the other construction booms that Atlanta has had at any time in the modern era.

The danger is that we are replicating the suburban aesthetic and cultural environment of decades past by focusing on parking, car-oriented retail and a suburban design ethos with little regard for how these design choices work within the city.