But a portion of the infrastructure could be financed through leasing air rights above the Connector.
The design concept was drafted by engineering firm Jacobs and paid for by the Atlanta Downtown Improvement District, which managed by CAP. The proposal ranks among the more ambitious plans to reinvigorate the urban core, including a long hoped-for but not realized multi-modal transit hub in Downtown's Gulch. The Beltline, alternatively, has stimulated development east of downtown.
“The new Downtown neighborhood of The Stitch reflects the new-again design philosophy of walkable, people-oriented urbanism supporting the ideals of healthy living and sustainable environments,” the study said.
The report estimates the project could stimulate $1.1 billion in redevelopment and property value growth.
Boston’s Big Dig buried freeways and replaced them with green space and pedestrian areas, rejuvenating the city’s downtown.
Separately, the Buckhead Community Improvement District has studied a similar idea with Jacobs. The design concept near Lenox Square would create a park stretching from Atlanta Financial Center on Peachtree Road to the Lenox Road-Ga. 400 interchange. It would essentially cover Ga. 400 and the Buckhead MARTA transit station, creating an at-grade and walkable connection to apartment towers and office buildings now cut off by the highway.