The Atlanta Purple People Needer

I’ve been saying this for years, and, regrettably, it still rings true.

“It’s like the city views downtown only for events.” ATL Urbanist blogger Darin Givens.

And that’s why downtown remains so, well, meh. Atlanta remains a city built for tourists. It’s been that way ever since they paid Sid and Marty Krofft to build an amusement park inside what is now CNN Center.

Downtown wasn’t vibrant then and that still holds true today — unless there’s a big event in town. So it’s no surprise the streetcar has been a flop.

“The common complaint about the streetcar is that it ‘doesn’t go anywhere,’ which exposes a major flaw in land use,” Givens wrote. “There should not be three miles in the original street grid of our historic city center that can ever be described as ‘nowhere.’ The fact that it can is proof of a failure that needs correction.”

Agreed. Too bad the $100 million spent on the streetcar wasn’t spent on making downtown a place Atlantans want to visit.


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