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Atlanta freeway revolts

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Title: Atlanta freeway revolts  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Old Fourth Ward, Inman Park, Druid Hills, Georgia, John Howell (Atlanta), Lanier University
Collection: Anti-Road Protest, Druid Hills, Georgia, Old Fourth Ward, Urban Renewal in Atlanta, Georgia
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Atlanta freeway revolts

Unbuilt freeways in Atlanta in red:
East-west routes: Stone Mountain Fwy at top, Langford Pkwy at bottom.
North-south route: I-485/GA400
1970 map of proposed route of I-485 through northeast Atlanta

There have been multiple I-485 and the Stone Mountain Freeway through Intown Atlanta, lasting over 30 years, from the early 1960s until the final construction of Freedom Parkway on a small portion of the contested routes in 1994.[1]

Contents

  • I-485 and Stone Mountain Freeways 1
    • Location 1.1
    • Plans for new freeways 1.2
    • Success in stopping construction 1.3
    • The result 1.4
  • Jimmy Carter's "Presidential Parkway" 2
  • Eastern part of Lakewood Freeway/Langford Parkway 3
  • 2010 plan for I-475 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

I-485 and Stone Mountain Freeways

Proposed freeways in Intown Atlanta, 1960s–1970s

Location

The original plans for the Atlanta freeway system (map, p.2) included several freeways that were never built.

One was a north-south freeway parallel to, and 2–3 miles east of today's I-675 at the southeast Perimeter.

  • Georgia 400 would have continued south from its current terminus at I-85 near Lindbergh, through Morningside, Virginia-Highland, Poncey-Highland to Copenhill, the site of today's Carter Center (see detailed map of the route through Morningside and Virginia Highland)
  • At Copenhill, there would have been an interchange with the east-west Stone Mountain Freeway
  • The highway would have continued south roughly along Moreland Avenue, until the Perimeter, where it would have continued as today's I-675

Another was the east-west Stone Mountain Freeway, which:

  • Would have begun in Downtown Atlanta and followed today's Freedom Parkway eastwards to Copenhill and the interchange with the north-south freeway
  • Continued eastwards parallel to Ponce de Leon Avenue and Scott Boulevard until the northeast Perimeter, where it would have continued as today's Stone Mountain Freeway

Portions of the two highways were to bear the number I-485: the east-west highway from Downtown to Copenhill, and the north-south highway from Copenhill north to I-85.

Plans for new freeways

In 1964 the Georgia Highway Department (GHD) announced plans to build I-485. In May, 1965, the Morningside Lenox Park Association (MLPA) was formed to fight the highway. MLPA hired planners who suggested an alternate route E, (map) roughly along the BeltLine from Ponce de Leon Avenue north to Ansley Mall and from there alongside Piedmont Road north to today's I-85/GA-400 interchange. In July 1965 a dueling civic association, the Morningside Monroe Civic Association (MMCA), was formed to fight Route E. In February 1966 the highway department definitively chose the original route (route B) through Morningside.[2]

MLPA filed a lawsuit in October 1966 to try to stop construction and was denied; the appeal was denied in June 1967.

Success in stopping construction

Nonetheless the road was eventually stopped.

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