Westside Park Will (Finally) Have its Grand Opening Next Week

Phase One of the much-delayed Westside Park will have it official ribbon-cutting on Tuesday, August 17th
Rendering: Official
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Fifteen years in the making, Atlanta’s largest park is finally making its debut. Atlanta Parks and Recreation announced this week that the long awaited park has scheduled its Grand Opening for Tuesday, August 17th at 10:00am. Located in Atlanta’s Rockdale neighborhood, the first phase of the park has been built around the decommissioned Bellwood Quarry for a reported cost of $44 million. The quarry has already been transformed into a new reservoir that holds 30 days worth (2.4 billion gallons) of emergency drinking water, which was completed in early 2021 for a cost of $321 million after five-years of construction.

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The park has been under construction since 2018 but and has been in planning since approximately 2006, when the City of Atlanta bought the property from Fulton County after Vulcan Materials Company decided to end their lease early. The purchase was one of the first major land acquisition as part of the BeltLine project, and is now one of the last pieces of the puzzle to be set into place.

The park had originally been slated to open in 2020, but due to COVID-19, those plans were pushed back while construction continued. The first phase of the park was expected to cost $26 million, according to project consultant HGOR‘s website, however due to the delays, the park will debut a full $44 million of amenities on Tuesday. The timeline or cost of future phases has not been disclosed.

When completed, the park will be 280 acres – 100 acres larger than Atlanta’s current largest park, Piedmont Park – and will include miles of ADA accessible trails that will connect the Proctor Creek Greenway, the Chattahoochee River Corridor and the forthcoming Westside BeltLine Trail. On Tuesday, visitors will be treated the first 2.5 miles of those trails, as well as the first public look at large environmental sculptures and the “Grand Overlook” from a cliff over the quarry. The park will be accessible from the main gateway entrance off of West Marietta Street NW. For a closer look at the new facilities, the Atlanta Parks Department has released a video showing aerial footage of the Phase One facilities.

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Daniel Alvarado

Daniel Alvarado is an AICP Certified Urban Planner, transportation advocate, researcher and writer originally from San Antonio, Texas. He received his Master's Degree in Community and Regional Planning from the University of Texas at Austin, where his research focused on the intersection of green infrastructure and transportation. Daniel has been published by Decipher City, Progrss.org, and has contributed to dozens of comprehensive and transportation plans across the country.

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10 Comments

          1. None of the entrances nor any of the park is in the Bankhead neighborhood – its right down the road but park isn’t in it. The park is bordered by Grove Park, Rockdale and Howell Station neighborhoods.

  1. There is also an entrance on the South side of the park off of Grove Park Place in the Grove Park neighborhood. It should be noted that the south entrance is only a pedestrian entrance with no parking and it is remarkably underwhelming compared to the northern entrance which borders the wealthier Howell Station neighborhood. There really should be more attention paid to this obvious disparity. I doubt the city will be telling people to enter from the south for their ribbon cutting ceremony.

    1. Hey Michael, that’s not accurate. Howell Station is to the east of the Park, and we literally have zero walkable entrances to the park, despite being one of the adjacent neighborhoods. The North entrance you’re talking about is in the Rockdale neighborhood, which a few years ago I understand was largely absorbed by Grove Park. The entrance is closer to the boundaries of West Highlands, and is either in Grove Park (if Rockdale was absorbed), or very close to the northern border of the neighborhood.

  2. Who spends 44 Million Dollars building a Beautiful Oasis and FORGETS TO SECURE A PROPER ADDRESS?

    That’s pretty INSANE!

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