Gulch redevelopment proposals: Summing up the summaries (Updated)

16 Mar

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The three development teams short-listed to develop the multi-modal passenger terminal (MMPT) in the downtown “gulch” area have submitted their proposals to the Georgia Department of Transportation staff, the AJC reported Friday. The DOT posted summaries of the proposals in the MMPT section of their Web site.

The summaries are pretty short on details, but I pulled out a few highlights.

From the Cousins Properties team:

“‘Below the street’ is a central transit hub, a connecting point. ‘Above’ is a vibrant, mixed-use urban environment, driven by the market, linking downtown Atlanta neighborhoods and activity centers with reconnected street grids and green spaces. The transportation connectivity below drives the Region and the State, while the development above creates new linkages that reconnect the City.”

There was no mention of specific design elements in the Cousins summary, but the plan did propose:

  • “Enhancing the transit experience by building a ‘meeting place’ where modes connect”
  • “Reconnecting downtown streets and neighborhoods in a positive, regenerative way”
  • “Designing open spaces for people, linking them to the broader public environment”

From the H.J. Russell & Company team:


“The MMPT must be a destination – a place that people desire to visit and experience over and over again…..We have to create something unique and special that generates the desire of people to utilize transit and seek this as a destination. It needs to be inviting, exciting, novel and iconic.”

Design elements

  • “An Iconic Terminal Building that becomes the important civic building for all of the city of Atlanta”
  • “An iconic tower and associated mixed-use development that reinforces the importance of the place, creates a ‘calling card’ on the skyline and anchors a vibrant urban neighborhood.”
  • “A dynamic public open space that stitches the heart of the city back together and links Centennial Olympic Park, the Green Line, Castleberry Hill and the neighborhoods beyond”
  • “An extended street grid that creates development parcels and reconnects the city in a pedestrian-friendly way.”

From the Terminus Development Partners team:


A “Capital Center” that would “knit together the urban fabric across the railroad gulch, thereby connecting the area’s numerous sports, entertainment and cultural destinations and institutions currently separated by the urban void of the gulch.”

Design elements

  • “The highlight of the vision is State Square, a progammable green space sthat stretches between Peachtree Stret and Centennial Olympic Drive, serving locals and visitors alike. State Square is framed by new development blocks that strengthen existing districts currently separated by the gulch.”
  • “The Terminal is the key to Atlanta’s transit-oriented future described in the City’s newly adopted Sustainability Guidelines and the Connect Atlanta Plan, and Concept 3. It is a landmark glass structure, bringing daylight into the state-of-the-art transit terminal located below ground.

TDP’s summary also includes two color renderings.

So, what’s next?

“DOT staff and advisors are expected to announce a preferred development team on Monday,” the AJC said.  “Then, public hearings will be held before the DOT board votes on the choice in May.”

So, this time next week we should know who the DOT’s preferred choice is.  “Monday” was, in fact, this Monday, March 14. On that day, Atlanta Business Chronicle reported that the DOT chose the Cousins Properties team for the project.

If the DOT board is scheduled to vote in May, public hearings might be only a few weeks away. Check back for dates and times.


One Response to “Gulch redevelopment proposals: Summing up the summaries (Updated)”


  1. History of the Future « The Oppidan Omnibus - 04/13/2011

    […] Atlanta was then known for. One of the proposed sites for the terminal was approximately where the downtown railroad gulch now lies. The authors had an ambitious vision for the proposed terminal. “The station could […]

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