Imagine Memorial LCI plan kicks off with public design studio Sept. 27-29

ATLANTA _ Residents and business owners in the Memorial Drive neighborhoods will have the opportunity to help plan the future of the Corridor at a public design studio Sept. 27-29 for the Imagine Memorial LCI plan.

We’re trying a different approach with community engagement with this plan. Rather than hosting a handful of weeknight meetings over a few months, we’re hosting a design studio over three days, including day and evening hours and a Saturday. Some people can’t attend weeknight meetings, so we want to give more options for stakeholders to participate.

A team of planners and urban designers from Lord Aeck Sargent will be available the entire time to listen to your ideas, and actually sit down with you to sketch out designs in real-time. We hope it’s a more interactive and creative approach to planning that reflects the unique character of our part of the City.

When:

  • Thursday, Sept. 27, 10 am to 8 pm
  • Friday, Sept. 28, 10 am to 5 pm
  • Saturday, Sept. 29, 10 am to 2 pm

Where: 

Media Center at Alonzo A. Crim Open Campus High School, 256 Clifton St SE, Atlanta, GA 30317.

MARTA route #21 stops in front of the school on Memorial Drive. Bikes may be locked to the signs at the north end of the campus. Parking is available on the back (east side) of the campus. Enter the driveway on Clifton Street nearest to Memorial Drive and follow the signs for “Public Meeting.”  

You may drop by any time that’s convenient for you, but we are also seeking groups to schedule specific blocks of time to focus on certain areas. For example, leaders from the East Lake neighborhood may schedule a time to visit together for a work session to focus on their specific concerns. Any group can schedule a time by contacting Eboni Brown at 470-234-5323 or ebrown@contenteconsulting.com.

To learn more about the LCI program and what topics it covers, please keep reading.

Background on the LCI program

If you attend enough neighborhood meetings around Atlanta, you’ve probably heard the abbreviation “LCI” thrown around. What does that mean? The Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) Program is run by the Atlanta Regional Commission, the Atlanta Metro Area’s regional planning and intergovernmental coordination agency. The LCI program awards planning grants on a competitive basis to local governments and nonprofits to produce and implement plans for the improvement of existing town centers and corridors.

LCI Program Goals:

  • Providing access to a variety of travel modes including transit, roadways, walking and biking
  • Encouraging mixed-income residential neighborhoods, employment, shopping and recreation options
  • Developing an outreach process that promotes the involvement of all stakeholders

Imagine Memorial and LCI

The LCI program is the next step for the Imagine Memorial study commissioned by Atlanta City Councilwoman Natalyn Archibong. The study was conducted as a semester studio project in Fall 2014 by graduate students in Georgia Tech’s School of City and Regional Planning studio in the fall of 2014. That study built on a previous (now out-of-date) LCI plan for the western part of the Corridor and incorporated several past plans. Through the leadership of District 1 Councilmember Carla Smith and neighborhood advocates, the previous LCI plan resulted in the SPI-22 zoning district that has shaped much of the development on the western end of Memorial Drive.

New-LCI-Application-Map
This map shows the proposed boundary of the new Imagine Memorial LCI plan. The previous 2003 Memorial-MLK LCI plan is in dark purple. 

What do LCI plans do?

Community_Engagment
Map from a community engagement meeting conducted by the Imagine Memorial team in 2014.

The plan will analyze land use and zoning in the communities along the Corridor and develop recommendations to address them. In areas where land uses and zoning already complement LCI priorities, the focus will be on consistency; in areas that do not, recommendations will be made for legislative and regulatory changes. It will also identify the most pressing transportation needs that force people to take more car trips and create a plan for addressing them. This could include sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes, roundabouts, and transit upgrades like shelters or dedicated lanes. It’s important to note that the LCI plan by itself does not change any zoning or provide transportation funding. It’s up to the communities and agencies to implement its recommendations and seek funding for what’s in the plan. All of the recommendations must go through the normal approval process for the City of Atlanta and other jurisdictions.

Ped_Infrastructure_Lacking
Pedestrian infrastructure is a major issue identified along the Corridor for people who need or choose to move along the Corridor without driving.

The Imagine Memorial LCI seeks to actively engage both public and private stakeholders in Neighborhood Planning Units, neighborhood associations, non-profits, businesses, and public agencies.

To browse some of the relevant documents and plans related to this effort, please visit our Resources page. You can read more about the LCI procurement process and study area in a previous post here.

For more questions about the LCI process or anything related to Memorial Drive Corridor planning, please feel free to contact Greg Giuffrida at 404-895-3082 or ggiuffrida@atlantadowntown.com.