Parks/Trails/Greenspaces Above is a rendering the BCID shows on its website of a potential 'Park in the Sky' over Ga 400 in Buckhead.

Published on March 3rd, 2016 |

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CID takes actions to finish Loudermilk Park, review ‘sky’ park proposal

Two Buckhead parks—one a reality but still getting finishing touches and the other still somewhat pie-in-the-sky visioning—were the focus of the Buckhead Community Improvement District (CID) board’s March 2 meeting.

The photo shows the apex of Charlie Loudermilk Park (at the intersection of Peachtree and Roswell roads) where the sculpture likely would be placed.

The apex of Charlie Loudermilk Park (at the intersection of Peachtree and Roswell roads) where the sculpture likely would be placed.

Charlie Loudermilk Park, opened last year at the intersection of Peachtree and Roswell roads following a total redesign, is still getting some finishing touches while awaiting the major addition of a piece of sculpture at its focal point.

CID Executive Director Jim Durrett reported to the board that he is about to conclude negotiations with Charlie Loudermilk and architect John Portman to get a sculpture placed in the park.

He said he has a small model of the sculpture and is working on getting a cost for forging the sculpture. Some work will need to be done in the park to prepare it for the sculpture. And some final negotiating apparently is needed to make this a reality.

Meanwhile, lighting has been installed in the top of the bell tower at the north end of the park and some paint touch-up is being done to some elements.

BuckheadView recently received several inquiries as to why the street lights around the park have been dark at night. Apparently it has been part of an ongoing negotiation as to who pays the power bill for the lights–the CID or city of Atlanta.

Tony Peters of the CID staff met with Georgia Power on site recently to start the process of getting an account set up for the lights, which would be followed by a 30-day burn. When the 30-fday burn is complete, the city will then inspect and approve and the city will then take back over maintenance of the lights and the power bill.

Thanks to Dist. 7 City Councilman Howard Shook, BuckheadView readers are no longer in the dark about why the park has been dark.

The graphic shows how the 1/3-mile-long park would fit over GA 400 in the central business district of Buckhead. Peachtree Road is at left and Lenox Road at right.

The graphic shows how the 1/3-mile-long park would fit over GA 400 in the central business district of Buckhead. Peachtree Road is at left and Lenox Road at right.

Turning to a more complex park situation, Durrett reported that a subcommittee of the board is reviewing proposals from six design firms related to the vision of building an almost 10-acre park in the air space over GA 400 and the Buckhead MARTA rail station that would stretch from Peachtree to Lenox roads.

In January, the board decided to issue a request for proposals for park designs and cost estimates. “We had six outstanding teams [submit]…They absolutely understand the project,” said Durrett.

But Thad Ellis, senior vice president at Cousins Properties and a member of the review subcommittee, voiced another opinion. Ellis said a couple of the proposals are just a “fancy regurgitation” of items in the CID request, while another stood out as “fantastic.”

At the CID’s April meeting, the firm selected by the subcommittee will be presented to the full board, including its technical qualifications and their estimated costs. At that time the board may vote to move forward to the next step, or put the concept on the shelf for now.

At the March 2 meeting, Durrett did not reveal the names of any bidders and refused to give board members any indication of the price tags the firms put on the concept.

“I don’t want to have a discussion of costs to influence anybody’s decision,” Durrett said.

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    4 Responses to CID takes actions to finish Loudermilk Park, review ‘sky’ park proposal

    1. Buckhead Betty says:

      1) Why does Loudermilk park not use solar lights in this day and age and stop the bickering about who’s going to pay the electric bill?
      2) Regarding the “sky” park – “I don’t want to have a discussion of costs to influence anybody’s decision,” Durrett said. Really? Let’s just ignore costs and pick whatever we like and it’ll all just work out {insert eye roll}… I have never heard such a ridiculous statement. Who is footing the bill? I sincerely hope it’s not our tax dollars.

    2. Buckhead Fan, I thought says:

      Dallas has a 5.2 acre park built over a freeway. Is Buckhead not as capable as Dallas? Can it not raise the necessary private funds to build such an innovative public space for its residents? I thought Buckhead was one of the city’s best neighborhoods, I’d expect you guys to be able to get something like this done.

    3. Jake says:

      I would gladly pay additional tax dollars to get this park in as soon as possible. I feel like direct community improvement is the one time when higher taxes are really worth it. Buckhead so badly needs a green space like this. If I didn’t work in Buckhead it would be a no-brainer to pick Midtown to live in for Piedmont Park alone.

      In my opinion though it shouldn’t need anything fancy. Just grass, trees, maybe a bike path circling and through the park, and a statue or fountain. I feel like trying to be creative might reduce the amount of green space.

      Please get this started!

    4. Jill says:

      If the CID does the park, then only the commercial property owners within the CID boundaries will pay for it.

      However, sometimes these CID funds can be used as the local match for city and county grant funds.

      Residential parcels do not pay into a CID.

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