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Plans Move Forward for Buckhead Park Over Ga. 400

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Design firm to be paid $250K for first phase

A local group’s dream to cap a stretch of Ga. Highway 400 in central Buckhead with 10 acres of green space just got a little closer to reality.

The Buckhead Community Improvement District announced this week a partnership with award-winning, New York City-based design firm Rogers Partners for a project now called "Park Over GA400."

The business will oversee phase one of the project — a design and vision plan not to exceed $250,000 — which includes work on a schematic plan, funding strategy, engineering, and efforts to determine the park's management structure, officials said.

The improvement district, which came up with the concept, released a request for proposals earlier this year from qualified firms. Since then, visions for the 1/3-mile park poured in.

The RFP made one thing clear: Project leaders are aiming for a signature attraction that can hold its own with the great urban parks of America. The preliminary vision drew inspiration from places like Chicago's Millennium Park, Union Square in New York City, and Klyde Warren Park, which capped a highway in Downtown Dallas but is only about half the size of Buckhead's nearly 10-acre proposal.

According to a news release from The Buckhead Community Improvement District, Rogers Partners will also work with BCID to interview key stakeholders, analyze site conditions, develop preliminary project costs, and produce site-specific concept graphics to help wrangle project funding.

"We were impressed with all of the RFP responses, as well as the presentations from each of the three finalists, but Rogers Partners’ submission stood out. Selecting a firm to work on the next phase of the design of the Park over GA400 is a major step in having the plan come to fruition," Jim Durrett, Buckhead CID executive director, said in a release.

Durrett went on to say the idea came about several years ago during the same planning exercise that gave rise to Buckhead's PATH400, which is currently being extended. Added Durrett: "A signature park over (the highway) will significantly enhance and expand ongoing efforts in Buckhead to add open space and public gathering opportunities."

And now for some visual hypotheticals: