Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms spoke during the Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Ecumenical Commemorative Service at Ebenezer Baptist Church located near The King Center in Atlanta on January 15th, 2018. 
Photo: Phil Skinner/Phil Skinner
Photo: Phil Skinner/Phil Skinner

Mayor Bottoms to talk Beltline progress at second quarterly briefing

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms is set to speak about the Atlanta Beltline in a panel discussion next week. 

The second quarterly briefing will begin with a short introduction about the Beltline followed by updates. The quarterly briefings are intended for anyone in metro Atlanta interested in the Beltline’s progress.

The Beltline consists of re-purposed vacated railroad corridors that encircle the city and, when completed, will connect 45 in-town neighborhoods via a 22-mile main path and 11 additional miles of spur trails. Earlier this year, a bill that would have created a self-taxing district designed to help complete the Beltline failed to pass before the end of the legislative session.

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The event page says it will include a panel discussion focused on “equity and how Atlanta can be a City for all.” Equity includes topics such as economic development, housing affordability and transit, a spokeswoman said. 

Concerns about gentrification and a lack of affordable housing due in part to the Beltline’s success has plagued many residents in recent years. Housing and other equity issues prompted Beltline creator Ryan Gravel to resign from the Atlanta Beltline Partnership board in 2016.

In July, an investigation by the Georgia News Lab and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution found that the Beltline was not on track to reach its 2030 goal to create at least 5,600 affordable houses and apartments. CEO Paul Morris stepped down from his post a month later, and was eventually replaced by Brian McGowan.

McGowan will also be on the panel, along with Atlanta Housing Authority Interim CEO Brandon Riddick-Seals, Atlanta Planning Commissioner Tim Keane, Transformation Alliance Managing Director Odetta MacLeish-White and the BeltLine’s Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer Nonet Sykes.

The event will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Monday, June 4, at Friendship Baptist Church, 80 Walnut St. SW. Register here.

The first quarterly briefing, held in February, included roundtable discussions on topics such as better community engagement and creative programming. 

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People 2 People: May 19, 2018

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