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Transformation on the Horizon for Western Downtown?

A few major sites in the heart of the city are slated for improvements in coming years, thanks in part to tax allocation districts (TAD) that have helped foot the bill for improving intown neighborhoods. The Atlanta City Council was updated on many of the projects at their annual retreat, according to Atlanta INtown. Notably, the Westside of downtown is experiencing renewed interest, which in turn has driven major private investment in neighborhoods including Castleberry Hill, English Avenue and Vine City. And with the stronger economy, it seems the pace will only quicken with increased cash-flow into the neighborhoods.

More than 30 projects have contributed to the Westside TAD in the last two years, channeling $43 million into the neighborhood. Money has gone toward physical improvements — such as the recently opened Lindsay Street Park — as well as community initiatives to spur economic and jobs growth. The initial investment has spawned more than $240 million in private development, which includes funds for projects such as sprucing up Centennial Olympic Park and a major update of the Georgia World Congress Center. On a smaller scale, streetscape projects along Boone Boulevard and MLK Drive promise to add a fresh face to the neighborhood.

And according to Atlanta INtown, the good news isn't limited to the Westside. Among other projects, the council was briefed on the pending 400-acre redevelopment of Fort McPherson and a 9.2-acre park along Proctor Creek, signalling changes across parts of the city longing for investment.

· City Council hears updates on big projects at retreat [Atlanta INtown]