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Hall: Boulevard Improvement Plan Still Barreling Ahead

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Efforts to improve Boulevard show few signs of losing momentum, but whether they'll bring a lasting, noticeable change remains to be seen. In a wide-ranging interview with Atlanta INtown Paper, city councilmember and general Boulevard champion Kwanza Hall recaps the successes of last year's Year of Boulevard initiative — more colloquially known as "YoBoulevard" — and lists upcoming cleanups and fundraisers. (One campaign aims to erect a playground at Hope-Hill Elementary, the only Atlanta school without one; another will build the Old Fourth Ward's first dog park at Renaissance Park.)

Hall predicts next year's Atlanta Streetcar launch will give the Old Fourth Ward an economic jolt that should positively impact Boulevard. But Hall also acknowledges the Section 8 elephant in the room — the Bedford-Pines complex, owned by Boston-based Wingate company — which critics say casts a pall across Boulevard, especially north of Freedom Parkway. Hall reiterated that Wingate has no interest in selling Bedford-Pines to make way for new development, a la Techwood Homes and Capital Homes of yesteryear, the paper reports. Progress, however, may come with a planned project for low-income seniors.

· Year of Boulevard: A progress report [Atlanta INtown Paper]
· Is Boulevard This O4W Home's Achilles' Heel? [Curbed Atlanta]
[ABOVE: Freedom Parkway at Boulevard photo:]