Litter, rats, smog. Atlanta ranks number seven in the most visited city for its cultural attractions, enthusiastic night life and all the sporting events you can handle, but it also moved up four spaces to the fifth as the dirtiest city and second to Baltimore, as the most unsafe for visitors and its residents. Compared to New Orleans which has ranked in the number one spot but moved down to number two, not bad for a city who endured a hurricane, for all of the foot traffic going on there it’s pristine and easy to get around in when compared to Atlanta.
Times they are a changing
Caution wrong way. Making Atlanta easier to navigate. Greener forms of commuting, safer and cleaner sidewalks are just a start. The addition of the beltline (not even a pretty word) Northern Arc should be used to fix transportation and not to add additional pavement destroying the health of nature in the city. Regulating “hot urban islands” counteracting the warming effects of what is already paved. Atlanta and its surround area is due to be the next “hotzone” due to development paving over 380,000 acres according to NASA. Not paving greenspace reduces runoff, and builds the integrity of the water, rainwater retention, not to mention the air Atlanteans breathe.
Part of Lake Allatoona’s is the earthy solace, and modest area
What Allatoona does need is to preserve the integrity of the gem, what it doesn’t need is more slabs of concrete paving greenspace for more parking lot. The space spans decades of history. Greenspace increases urban property value, showing off the buildings. More concrete doesn’t enhance esthetic properties. Atlanta is supposed to be listed at one of the top most treed cities.
Maybe the new stadium will attract more residents to attend and visitors to appreciate football in Atlanta, updating the quality of your visit and access to the stadium. Supporting the team is about more than giving us something to talk about. A new stadium increases the value of the football team. The plans are under way already like it or not.
Underhill’s lush Civil War Encampment paving paradise
A beacon of fourteen acres of lush environment, there was a Civil War encampment there and artifacts still to be retrieved, for an apartment building complex. Underhill residents fight to preserve the rich green parcel that is faced with extinction. It’s preserving the fabric of an entire neighborhood and Atlanta history is about more than going to visit artifacts inside cold museum walls.
236-unit Apartment complex versus 14 acres of undeveloped forest and history
Albert Ashkouti owns First Guaranty Real Estate Development says he was “blindsided” by the civil war history revelation. Wyatt Gordon president of the Underhill Neighborhood Association says the area was rezoned years ago for single home housing property. The property was rezoned for apartment housing. Now add the timely discovery of the historical content of the land and you have a large red stop sign warning everyone involved that the forested area should be left alone. Timely yes, a message from above to stop? Please do, don’t collect two-hundred dollars, don’t continue forward and leave it alone.
The soil erosion alone will erupt and destroy the ecosystem along with a barrage of other problems
The forested land holds soil in place, prevents mudslides and flooding, and enhances nighttime cooling, reduces nitrates leaching into the soil, preventing septic system overload, keeping phosphorus out of the waterways and recharging the groundwater supply.
Gordon says the ideal outcome would be to leave the land alone until it’s historical value can be assessed, things are moving fast. But then again he doesn’t want an eyesore of an apartment complex built and wants studies done on the traffic value. Does that make it any better? More issues will be haggled over at the March meeting. Zoning may be adjusted, but Ashkouti hopes to break ground sometime this year.
Protected or unprotected greenspace is priceless
Understanding the greenness. The value of forested land once wasted for concrete, profits no one but the developers for a short time. Unbroken parcels of green land is habitat, park space and ecological value providing amenities beyond the aesthetic. It masks urban noise, slows heart beats and relaxes brain patterns, and fosters neighborhood social ties.
We hope the city advisors will come to appreciate the nuances of Atlanta’s fragile ecosystem beyond their lifetime. If Atlanta goes to asphalt and parking lot everywhere the life of the city will decline, and the health and well-being of its residents.