Vote YES for the Atlanta BeltLine + transit, transportation, and PROGRESS for our region on July 31!

Atlanta BeltLine Eastside Trail rendering - 10th and Monroe

Wow – I didn’t realize it’s been so long since I last wrote for Our Green Atlanta! Spending the past year planning the most eco-friendly wedding possible accounts for much of the time, as does trying to land my dream job. Luckily, both worked out perfectly! After five years of volunteering for the Atlanta BeltLine (and writing about it a lot on Our Green Atlanta), I finally landed a communications / marketing position with them several months ago. I love working for such a huge project building transit, trails, and parks – and working alongside people who share a similar outlook on life!

So… I would be remiss if I didn’t take a moment to talk about what the Transportation Referendum (TSPLOST / TIA) would mean for a revolutionary project that I’ve been passionate about for so long – and to ask you to vote YES.*

Next Tuesday, July 31, is the 10-county vote that would allow the Atlanta BeltLine to build 10.2 miles of transit.

About 5 miles would be on the old Atlanta BeltLine rail corridor on the east and west sides of town. The other ~5 miles would be crosstown connections through downtown and Midtown (with links to MARTA stops and the Atlanta Streetcar).

  • These crosstown connections will not happen without the Referendum (there is no funding in the foreseeable future).
  • No Referendum means several years tacked onto the build-out of transit.
  • No Referendum also likely means no future federal funding since the U.S. government won’t give money to a region that won’t take care of itself.
  • To vote no (or to abstain from voting) could result in a huge set-back for our city in terms of staying competitive with similar metropolitan areas.
Atlanta BeltLine's Transportation Referendum map

The Atlanta BeltLine would build 10.2 miles of transit on the east and west sides of the city and in crosstown connections through Midtown and downtown.

The Referendum would also build a MARTA extension from Lindbergh to Emory / CDC, personally impacting the neighborhood I grew up in. That line will eventually extend near our house and into Decatur.

The Referendum will pay for street, signal, and pedestrian improvements plus bike lanes on N. Druid Hills Road, creating a safer way for my husband and I to get around on our bikes along with all of our neighbors between Buford and Lawrenceville Highways. Just yesterday, I saw a man walking down N. Druid Hills Road in the road because there are no sidewalks. I also saw a guy on his bike riding down the street with cars flying within inches of his handlebars at 55 mph. This stresses me out incredibly. The Referendum would build at least 29 miles of bike improvements (and not all cities have even published their local project lists yet).

The Referendum will continue the Atlanta BeltLine’s existing multi-use trail near Piedmont Hospital across Peachtree and Piedmont Roads, creating a safe, quick way to navigate through a high-density area.

These are just a few of the projects that are near and dear to my heart. You can see what projects are near you with this interactive map.

Get more info on how your YES vote would impact the Atlanta BeltLine on our webpage, in our series of blog posts, and in our awesome video below.

I’m asking for your help in voting YES! I’m also asking that you share this blog post with anyone who lives in the 10-county region who might also vote YES!

(The 10 counties are DeKalb, Fulton, Cobb, Gwinnett, Cherokee, Clayton, Fayette, Henry, Rockdale, and Douglas.)

Mayor Reed and the press conference at Southface with environmental organizations in support of the Transportation Referendum

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed showed his support for the Transportation Referendum alongside 20+ environmental organizations on July 25 during a press conference at Southface.

I don’t usually get political, and I know nobody likes new taxes, but this is the biggest thing to ever happen to the Atlanta BeltLine and to transit and transportation in Atlanta. This is an off-season vote and voter turnout will determine the outcome.

Voting has already started. Find out where you can vote early.
Find out where you vote on July 31.

There is a rally for the BeltLine this Saturday, July 28 at 4:45 p.m. at the intersection of 10th Street and Monroe Drive (in front of Park Tavern). Make a sign and come out to show your support for the project and 10.2 miles of transit!! I’ll be there.

Please email me or comment below if you have questions or want more information. And thank you for voting and passing this along – it means the world to me!

Atlanta BeltLine Eastside Trail rendering - 10th and Monroe

The Atlanta BeltLine will build 10.2 miles of transit when the Transportation Referendum passes, including under Virginia Avenue and up to the edge of Piedmont Park at 10th Street and Monroe Drive (seen here).

* The Atlanta BeltLine does not advocate, but instead focuses on educating. In my personal time, though, I work to talk to as many people as possible about the benefits of bringing transit, trails, and parks to our city via the Transportation Referendum.

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