Snuggled up to a weedy former rail corridor that’ll one day become the Atlanta Beltline’s Southside Trail, Ormewood Park is ground zero for a multifamily explosion in coming years. For longtime denizens, the good news is that Ormewood’s tree-canopied, wandering streets are full of arty bungalows, ranches, and Victorian cottages that’ll be well-insulated from any newfound bustle, while still reaping full Beltline benefits. 2016 saw New Urban, eco-conscious pioneer Glenwood Park benefit from, of all things, a gargantuan next-door Kroger fed by asphalt parking, while new housing stock in Ormewood was getting snatched long before the drywall was primed, even at prices in the $600,000s. What’s more, Ormewood’s very own neighborhood festival — Meet the Makers — is now set in virtual stone to debut in March. No wonder OP tallied enough nominations for a No. 2 seed.
Where to begin with downtown Atlanta in 2016? Well, that cool Brutalist library — like Atlanta Streetcar operations — was spared from death this year. Atlanta’s first bike-share program debuted (fittingly) in the city’s historic core, hoping to pull customers from Georgia State University, which continued its everlasting downtown takeover. Philips Arena’s redo was unveiled, and city and team officials swore it’s going to finally help boost The Gulch into something else. The world’s first soccer field in a train station debuted downtown, as did The Masquerade. Two downtown landmarks — Centennial Olympic Park and Underground Atlanta — took steps toward planned overhauls (or in the park’s case, expansion). And even naysayers started to admit in 2016 that the Atlanta Falcons’ new roost should be pretty damn cool. Oh, and Shaky Knees rocked, while iconic Westin Peachtree Plaza gussied up for a 40th birthday. Big year, indeed.