The veil has lifted, and the Beltline's "Light the Line" initiative, as many expected, is an effort to provide lighting to the 2.25-mile Eastside Trail that connects Piedmont Park to Krog Street Market. But first, there's the matter of paying for it. The Atlanta Beltline Partnership, a nonprofit responsible for $54 million in private Beltline fundraising, is aiming to raise $1.1 million via their first crowd-funding campaign to install lighting in the century-old rail corridor. The goal is to have the $1.1 million in the bag by April 30, and it sounds like they've got a good start.
When the Eastside Trail was being built five years ago, conduit was installed to support future lighting. Beltline officials have designed a lighting plan that calls for 130 low-energy LED path lights every 90 feet along the trail. An interesting note, according to officials, is that "funding for lighting will be built into the budget for future Atlanta Beltline trail segments," as with the Westside Trail now.
Ponce City Market developer Jamestown has kicked in $100,000 to the Light the Line campaign — a donation pulled from parking fees that have been collected at the mixed-use project. Jamestown's CEO, Matt Bronfman, said in a statement: "It is exciting and rewarding to see the benefits of Ponce City Market's parking program, instituted just last fall, already coming to fruition."
Anyone else wishing to donate — or to arrange fundraising events — can do so at lighttheline.org.
If the campaign is a success, the Atlanta Beltline Partnership has plans to use the same approach for "targeted initiatives in other parts of the corridor," officials said, adding: "These crowd-funding campaigns would complement Atlanta Beltline fundraising efforts that typically focus more on foundations and larger companies."
So it sounds like the improvement of the Beltline is in your hands for now, Atlanta.
· Recent Beltline coverage, discussion [Curbed Atlanta]