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LINK Forward

Atlanta region needs to refresh annual LINK trips

For 22 years, an impressive group of metro Atlanta civic, business and government leaders have spent three days a year visiting a North American city to learn how other cities are handling their urban challenges.

The LINK trips also have provided people an opportunity to get to know each other – connecting with leaders from different races, genders and sections of the Atlanta region as well as people from different circles of influence.

Nathaniel Smith Jack Hardin

San Diego focus on affordability parallels conversations in Atlanta

SAN DIEGO, CA – Housing affordability and homelessness are front-and-center challenges in San Diego – a region where 46 percent of the area is dedicated for conservation that is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, Indian reservations as well as military land.

The focus on affordability parallels the conversations occurring in Atlanta, which has become increasingly focused on being a region where the people of modest income can still afford to live.

Balboa Park

San Diego has an hour-glass economy of well-paid and low-paid jobs with little in the middle

SAN DIEGO, CA – On the second day of the metro Atlanta LINK trip to this southern California city, Georgia leaders discovered differences and similarities between the two regions.

In San Diego, one out of every four jobs is related to the military, generating an economic impact of $50 billion a year and employing up to 140,000 people in the south California region.

San Diego by day

San Diego and Tijuana enjoy a bilateral economy

SAN DIEGO, CA – It’s hard for residents of San Diego and Tijuana to see where the U.S. border begins and Mexican border ends.

In fact, San Diego and Tijuana consider themselves to be “CaliBaja” or “Calexico” or “Mexicali” – all names that represent a mashing together of the southern edge of California with the northern edge of Mexico.

Randy Hayes Felicia Moore

Metro Atlanta LINK trip lands in San Diego

The Atlanta delegation arrived in San Diego Wednesday morning – West Coast time – spending its first stop at Liberty Station, a redeveloped Naval training center that has been turned a complex of art galleries, shops, offices and restaurants.

Mark Cafferty, president and CEO of the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corp., told the Atlanta delegation that Liberty Station is one of the most successful redevelopments of a former military complex in the United States.

San Diego

Influential Atlanta leaders to visit San Diego in May for 2018 LINK trip

Housing affordability and transit will be key focus areas of the 2018 LINK trip to San Diego, which will take place from May 9 to May 12.

Ever since 1997, a group of more than 100 Atlanta leaders – representing governments, businesses and nonprofits –  go to a different city to learn about the best practices that we can bring back to our region. And it also provides an opportunity for leaders from the 10-county region to get to know one another.