With his second and final term in office winding down, Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed earlier this week announced a $100 million expansion of Piedmont Park and the , including a $2 million commitment from an anonymous philanthropist in support of the city's acquisition of land abutting the park.
With the purchase of properties at the corner of Piedmont Road and Monroe Drive, the city, which has agreed to spend $20 million to acquire the land, aims to create an enhanced landscape that will serve as a gateway entrance to the park. The project also will include a connection to the Atlanta BeltLine, improved pedestrian trails and access to the park, and the creation of additional greenspace. A committee headed by Home Depot CFO Carol Tomé, a member of the Atlanta Committee for Progress, has been established to raise an additional $80 million in philanthropic and private funds to acquire the remaining property and underwrite the cost of design and construction.
"It is fitting that for my final announcement as the fifty-ninth mayor of the City of Atlanta, that I had the honor of announcing an historic expansion of Piedmont Park," said Reed. "Piedmont Park is our city's crown jewel, and my friends [Atlanta Botanical Gardens CEO] Mary Pat Matheson and [ president and CEO] Mark Banta shared my belief that this moment represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to purchase the land needed to expand this beautiful park."
(Photo credit: Piedmont Park Conservancy)