Riches to Rags to Riches
Today, Midtown is a robust blend of businesses and residences, hotels, restaurants, cultural and retail destinations, greenspaces, pedestrian-friendly sidewalks and safe streets. But it wasn't always so. Indeed, what lends Midtown much of its character is its riches-to-rags-to-riches history.
In the late 1800s, the area was one of Atlanta's finest neighborhoods with graceful mansions lining Peachtree Street. The post-World War II era, however, led to a downturn as people left the city for Atlanta's growing suburbs. By the tumultuous 1960s, Midtown was best known for unsavory streets and blocks of underutilized land.
Beginning in the 1970s, urban visionaries reclaimed the neighborhood and began its renaissance. Since 1978, Midtown Alliance has facilitated Midtown's progress, transforming this part of Atlanta into a true mixed-use, new urbanist, live-learn-work-play community. Providing the framework and impetus for this phenomenal transformation has been Blueprint Midtown, the Alliance's visionary, community-derived development plan.
Bringing a Blueprint to Life
Blueprint Midtown is a nationally regarded community planning process spearheaded by Midtown Alliance in 1997. What sets Blueprint Midtown apart from so many planning processes is the fact that it got implemented. Big time. The Blueprint stimulated dramatic changes to Midtown by providing a framework and impetus for new housing, desirable office space, transportation improvements, public safety initiatives, environmental clean-up, and a pedestrian-friendly streetscape program.
Thousands of citizens and businesses were involved in the process, and the results of Blueprint Midtown have been nothing short of astounding. They include:
- The single largest rezoning in the City's history
- More than $4.5B of new investment since 1997, including 6.2M square feet of office space, more than 6,800 residential units, 630K square feet of retail, and 1,300 hotel rooms.
- The creation of the Midtown Improvement District (MID) funded by voluntary assessments of commercial property owners. To date, with contributions from the MID and public and private grants, more than $100M has been raised to continue to build-out the Blueprint.
Momentum continues today, with substantial new development activity. Read more about Blueprint Midtown's vision and projects.