A Fulton County judge on Thursday ordered the city of Atlanta to refrain from renaming Harris Street to John C. Portman Jr. Boulevard.
Superior Court Judge Constance Russell temporarily stopped the city from notifying the U.S. Postal Service of the name change, removing existing Harris Street signs, installing new street signs or changing city maps. Russell said her injunction will remain in effect until July 15.
"It's a good first step," said attorney Wright Mitchell, who represents the Atlanta Preservation Center and five individuals who filed suit against the city, the city council and its members. "Our ultimate goal is to make the city council follow its own ordinance."
The lawsuit was filed after the council recently voted 9-5 to rename the downtown street after Portman, the iconic Atlanta architect and developer, despite opposition from historic preservationists and neighborhood associations. The suit contended the council and a commission established to honor Portman violated the state's Open Meetings Act by not advertising meetings or opening them to the public.