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On Atlanta's BeltLine and 21st-Century Infrastructure

In an interview, Atlanta BeltLine visionary Ryan Gravel discusses the ongoing project and how it fits an emerging, multidisciplinary understanding of what good infrastructure can be.
March 24, 2016, 2pm PDT | Philip Rojc | @PhilipRojc
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Ryan Gravel is the man who conceived of Atlanta's BeltLine, an "infrastructure corridor" that will loop around the city containing transit, green space, bike/pedestrian paths, and housing. Angie Schmitt writes, "Gravel says what's happening in Atlanta with the BeltLine is part of a bigger shift: taking 20th century infrastructure and repurposing it for 21st century needs." 

In the interview, Gravel references his recently-published book, Where We Want to Live. "We're at the beginning of this pretty significant shift that I think is on the order of magnitude of sprawl. We want things to change, we need things to change for our survival, but as they do change we need to be thoughtful about how we do that so that's its equitable."

Gravel emphasizes the people-centered, democratic impetus behind BeltLine. "It wasn't part of some big plan for the city, it came from an academic environment. It didn't come from City Hall and it didn't come from developers, people could just evaluate it. And it's really the public that made the project happen. Because the people of Atlanta fell in love with it."

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Published on Friday, March 11, 2016 in Streetsblog USA
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