clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Atlanta’s Memorial Drive Greenway finalized concept has been unveiled

New, 39 comments

Community input helped guide ambitious plans for key thoroughfare

The finalized overall concept for the Memorial Drive Greenway. Renderings: Park Pride

The people of Atlanta have spoken, and a utopian vision for Memorial Drive’s westernmost reaches is now set in stone.

They’re calling this long-planned, sweeping expanse of greenspaces—all studded with public art and cafes—the Memorial Drive Greenway. It would span from Oakland Cemetery to a large park that caps The Connector where Memorial meets downtown.

Friends of Memorial Drive Greenway and Park Pride worked in concert for nearly a year to gather public input, which influenced the finalized concept plan presented below.

Leaders concede the concept is ambitious—but potentially game-changing for a vital, formerly downtrodden corridor experiencing a wave of investment.

So what are pretty visuals worth?

According to Park Pride, the concept “is a tool that can be used to fundraise and advocate for what would be a visionary step forward for the surrounding neighborhoods and a source of pride for the city and state.”

With plans in place, Friends of Memorial Drive Greenway are now strategizing how to engage elected officials and everyday citizens to make the park happen, leaders say.

Here’s an overview:

Overall, the Greenway vision calls for a continuous park experience with plenty of trees, seating, shade, water, and paths.

And closer looks at specific segments, beginning at Memorial Drive’s western junction with downtown Atlanta:

The vision calls for a full cap over The Connector, creating a large park that links the Capitol building to the rest of the park.
Per officials, the vision “presumes that a planned affordable housing development could be relocated to a nearby location through a land swap agreement with the city or the state.”
The park would connect over Hill Street using an ADA-accessible pedestrian bridge to increase safety while offering downtown views.
Near Oakland Cemetery, the vision calls for creating space for festival tents and markets.
Plans call for a variety of destinations in the park, including an arboretum, a day chapel, fountains, paths, cafés, gardens, and small restaurants, leaders say.