Planners unveil potential visions of Turner Field’s future

Planners working on a community study for the future of neighborhoods near Turner Field unveiled on Sunday three early concepts for the stadium neighborhoods.

Turner Field

Terraine Echols, of Summerhill, points to a map showing a design concept for the future of Turner Field at Atlanta Streets Alive on Sunday, April 17, 2016. J. Scott Trubey/strubey@ajc.com

The concepts, shown below, all include denser development, transit connecting the area to downtown via Capitol Avenue and a future for Turner Field as a football stadium for Georgia State University. Georgia State and development partners Carter and Oakwood Development are in negotiations to purchase the stadium and surrounding parking lots for future development.

They plan to convert the ballpark into a Georgia State football stadium, and build student housing, market rate apartments, senior living, single-family homes and retail. Their plans also call for a baseball field to go in the footprint of the former Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium and preserving the Hank Aaron home run wall.

The design concepts shown Sunday outside Turner Field during Atlanta Streets Alive were drafted using community input through the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Livable Centers Initiative. They’re non-binding, but the agency that is managing the sale of Turner Field asked would-be buyers incorporate concepts into their designs.

LINK: Turner Field group calls for community benefits agreement

The Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority, which owns the Ted, put in its sales process that the buyer of Turner Field incorporate elements of the community’s LCI study into their plans.

LINK: Hank Aaron statue to stay downtown

The design concepts also include more residential offerings,office space, parks and and improved street grids. All seemed to focus retail development along Capitol Avenue.

Here’s a look at each of the three concepts displayed Sunday by the city’s planning department, Invest Atlanta and designers from Perkins+Will.

1)            Ballpark Plaza

Turner Field

The Ballpark Plaza design features a Georgia State baseball field in the former Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium footprint.

In the Ballpark Plaza, there would be a Georgia State baseball field in the footprint of the former Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium and a plaza honoring Braves legend Hank Aaron. The design here would have features to slow traffic along the retail core along Capitol Avenue.

2)            Big Park

Turner Field

The Big Park concept includes a linear park from Turner Field north to Fulton Street that would preserve sight lines to the Gold Dome.

The Big Park concept includes a linear park from Turner Field north to Fulton Street that would preserve sight lines to the Gold Dome. A Georgia State baseball field would be built on land north of Fulton Street (that is not currently part of the land for sale by the Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority).

 

3)            Neighborhood Squares

Turner Field

This design features small blocks similar to Portland, Ore.

This design would re-establish small blocks – about 200 feet square. It also would preserve the former infield of the old Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium as a plaza honoring Aaron. A Panthers baseball field would be built to the south and west of the original Braves stadium.

Turner Field

Plans for the area include the potential for light rail from downtown.

Turner Field

Plans for the area include the potential for light rail from downtown.

Terraine Echols, a Summerhill resident, said he liked the third concept of the three, and particularly liked planners’ concentration on restoring at least some of the area’s original street grid, which was cut off by two stadiums and the freeways.

“They definitely need to integrate transportation options,” he said. He also liked the retail and density focused along Capitol Avenue.

Grant Park resident Cornelius Gadson said he preferred the Big Park plan with its mall from Turner Field toward downtown and renewed street grid.

“I like the return to a grid to promote density,” he said. But Gadson said he hopes that whatever plan emerges, that it takes into consideration the needs of long time residents. The area needs a grocery store, dining and more retail.

The residents want offerings that are aimed at them and not just students, he said.

Gadson also said he’s worried about development potentially displacing longtime residents if price spike and cause property taxes to climb.

“That diversity is important to keep,” he said.

The recreation authority and the Georgia State team are negotiating a deal to buy the property. They hope to close a deal this year.

The LCI community planning process is expected to wrap up with a final presentation to residents in June.

Reader Comments 0

25 comments
CrimeaRiver
CrimeaRiver

None of the concepts take advantage of Atlanta's '96 Olympic legacy by making it the visual theme for the whole development. The Olympic connection adds value and will attract tourists to the business developments. Right now, the Olympic torch is lying discarded on Capital Ave.

HotDawg
HotDawg

Once a ghetto, always a ghetto.

Desmond Moore
Desmond Moore

Where would you suggest the Atlanta Journal Constitution go?

slc10
slc10

I like the ballpark plaza concept. However, if there was a way to incorporate this and big park concept would work as well. The baseball field needs to be where the 715 wall is located and it should be named the Henry L. Aaron Stadium. 

Eddie Valdez
Eddie Valdez

The problem with these real world designers is that they NEVER include REAL GEORGIA TRAFFIC in any of there computer models -__-

Stu Barron
Stu Barron

What happened? Did Georgia State threaten to move? Braves would still be playing in Fulton County next year if the City attempted this years ago.

Asher Berman
Asher Berman

I honestly teared up reading this because the city has in the past done a disservice to its residence in this area after the Olympics. However, these plans look like the revitalization this area needs and one that will truly honor the legacy of the Olympics.

Will Devlin
Will Devlin

Funny - the Braves moved because they tried getting stuff like this to no avail. Retail, apartments, transportation options, etc.

Tommy Jones
Tommy Jones

The Braves moved because they couldn't get the city to pay for their stadium. Atlanta was not conned as easily as Cobb. Cobb is just beginning to suffer the consequences of bowing to a mediocre team in a lame sport.

Will Devlin
Will Devlin

Atlanta was too busy getting conned by Arthur Blank.

Tommy Jones
Tommy Jones

How? Atlanta is not paying for the new Falcons' stadium. Convention visitors are via the hotel tax.

Tommy Jones
Tommy Jones

And Atlanta, having the infrastructure to deal with large events, will make a lot of money off of the new stadium, where the Braves stadium will bust the Cobb budget.

Tommy Jones
Tommy Jones

Might be a nice area once the riff raff finish moving out to Cobb.

Stu Barron
Stu Barron

Cost of rent and property value is shooting up in Cobb because of the new stadium and there are no MARTA trains.

Tommy Jones
Tommy Jones

The traffic out there sucks already. Adding thousands of clueless baseball fans will make it even worse. It's hilarious that people are speculating enough to temporarily drive property values up, though. That just adds insult to injury. Fortunately, GA State will use the stadium for real sports.

Tommy Jones
Tommy Jones

Go all the way out to Cobb County and stop screwing up traffic in Atlanta!

Lindsey Gregory
Lindsey Gregory

Cobb will learn FIRSTHAND maybe they shouldn't have looked down their noses at publc transport (rail, NOT buses) once the stadium opens.

FanState87
FanState87

Looks good, I can't wait to see what GSU and Carter come up with.

sandyseeworld
sandyseeworld

Perhaps they can expand Turner Field to twice its size and put in a bid to hold a future Summer Olympics in Atlanta?

Quackmeyer
Quackmeyer

Keep the ballpark right were it is.  The Braves spent a ton of money on that dirt in improvements that a college could never afford. 

CDW2000
CDW2000

The concern about property values/taxes rising is quite real.  But the only way to ensure that doesn't happen is to legislatively establish a cap for current property residents.  


Assuming the area's redevelopment is successful (likely), rising property values are all but guaranteed to follow.