Went walking in the vicinity of Pershing Point and “Uptown” Atlanta in Upper Midtown the other day. I’ll say this much: West Peachtree is not really a fun place to be a pedestrian. There’s pieces of urbanism, but it doesn’t come together in a meaningful way. For starters, West Peachtree feels like a highway. It’s one way, wide, and cars are traveling at very fast speeds. It’s a shame to see how the Rhodes Center has been mutilated. At one time, there were two other similar buildings surrounding Rhodes Hall, an unusual example of an effort to preserve Victorian architecture in the 1930s…
…This was the first time I’d actually been in Pershing Point Park - it’s really a nice little outdoor room! The loss of the 1920s structures that used to front it was another nail in the coffin for the vitality of this nook of Midtown. There’s a few apartment buildings that give an idea of what the neighborhood looked like in its prime, as well as some interesting MCM structures like the John Marshall Law School. The little pocket park at 18th Street turned out really nice, especially since they managed to preserve the beautiful magnolia tree.
As a SCAD Atlanta grad, I spent a couple years around this area and completely agree with this sentiment. Passing from the dorms on Spring to a tiny printshop a block over on West Peachtree to (occasionally) the Pershing Point bank on Peachtree for cash was often a perilous game of Frogger with projects in hand.
While the pocket parks on Pershing and now 18th are a good start, the area could stand for some redevelopment or at least, God forbid, some decent crosswalks. Especially with all the poor SCAD freshmen stuck in this pedestrian hell, hopefully the community can come together and reboot the area as they have other parts of Midtown.
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- shorterexcerpts said: Arts Center is the closest MARTA station for me and I quickly realized that it may take longer, but Spring and Peachtree have far better/safer sidewalks than W. Peachtree in that part of town.
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- atlurbanist said: Great post! My family lived in a nearby apartment for a couple of years and I agree with all you’ve written here. West Peachtree, in this area, is one of the crappiest pedestrian experiences in Midtown. And Pershing Point Park is a gem.
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