On December 8, the Atlanta BeltLine presented updates about the Northeast Trail section that runs through Piedmont Heights. Thanks to everyone who joined in and asked questions, and thanks to the Atlanta BeltLine for doing a great job with the presentation!
If you missed it, the presentation is online as a PDF with lots of great photos and as a video recording. Older presentations are also on their website.
video by PiHi resident Gary Dresser (12/18/20)
The section from the Montgomery Ferry Bridge up to the Buford Highway Connector is scheduled to open by the end of January 2021! Keep your fingers crossed for great weather and healthy workers!
There will be a ramp on the south side of the Montgomery Ferry Bridge leading down to the trail. Currently, there is NOT a plan for a public entrance at Ansley Mall by the Publix. This gate is a construction entrance (and that Georgia Power can use for maintenance).
In addition to the Georgia Power work on the electrical lines, work has focused on utilities, drainage systems, paving, and environmental plantings (thanks, Trees Atlanta!).
They'll pave the ramp from the bridge down to the trail last, since it's one of their only construction entrances, and they don't want to damage it once it's paved. Also, more plantings will be installed on the portion behind Flagler Avenue and between the ramp and the triplex home on Montgomery Ferry. Lighting will also be installed.
LOTS! Design documents, permits, and funding! These are all needed to:
Design documents are currently under review, about 90% complete. They're in conversations with City of Atlanta and GDOT for permitting - could take 6 months minimum or up to 1 year with GDOT. Also working on funding for upcoming fiscal year, but it's not secured yet, but it's at the top of the queue for their projects. Hope to have an update in a few months with more specifics.
Also still working on the connection with the Armour area. The original idea wouldn't work for Norfolk Southern, so they had to rethink their plan of how to cross over. Any plan also has to work with CSX rail, MARTA, GA Power, etc. Will have more info here in 2021.
Megan (BeltLine) met with Ansley Monroe Villas HOA a few months ago. BeltLine doesn't build these connections, but they will work with HOAs who want a connection onto the trail from their private property. Working through what this connection will look like. Existing fence was put up as a temporary measure during GA Power utility construction. No plans for a permanent fence in this area, and it sounds like various neighbors have different opinions about whether they want a permanent fence or not. TBD.
The bridge behind Ansley Golf & Publix has great infrastructure, which will be reused. They will redo the wooden part that's in need of repair though and add on to it.
At least 3 years for design and permits. Plus they need to raise $120 million in funding. They have about $8 million identified so far.
Paul Coleman, longtime owner of the Two Minit Car Wash at Piedmont Avenue and Rock Springs Road, passed away on November 16. He is survived by his wife, Heather; his father, Bobby; his brother, Eddie; and several nieces and nephews.
Paul’s father bought the car wash in 1974, and Paul began working there as a young boy. He quickly demonstrated a head for business, and in the late 1970s had the idea of putting a mannequin out front to attract customers. He installed a life-sized mechanical clown, which turned its head and waved at passersby, but it quickly drew complaints from customers who found it “creepy.” Paul exchanged it for a gorilla, which evolved into such a neighborhood landmark that the business became known as the “Gorilla Car Wash.” One customer even named the gorilla “George.”
When Paul’s father retired in 1997, Paul took over. George aged over the years and at one point had become so scraggly that Paul “retired” him also. But regular customers complained so much that Paul moved him back out front. Since then, George has had three new “suits” and two “operations” on his mechanical innards.
George almost bought the farm in 1999 when a water heater pilot light set off leaking gas fumes in the storage room where he spends the nights. The explosion blew out the door and windows and singed George badly, but he survived; that was when got his last new suit. Now his fur has become shaggy again; he can no longer turn his head nor wave at passersby.
In 2015, this newsletter first wrote about Paul and his gorilla, suggesting perhaps it was time to have a neighborhood fundraiser to rehabilitate George. Wouldn’t that be a most fitting memorial for Paul?
What about it, Piedmont Heights?
By Bill Seay (Rock Springs Rd.)
During the pandemic, our brave firefighters keep doing what they do best – keeping our neighborhood safe!
Sign up to bring a dish during the Thanksgiving holiday to say thanks!
Runoff Election is Dec. 1
Early Voting Is Underway
Two runoff elections are currently underway. It is very important that you request a ballot for BOTH elections regardless of party affiliation. They will not automatically give you a ballot with both races. You have to request a ballot for the Congressional runoff and the runoff for State Senate District 39.
The first election is to temporarily fill Congressman Lewis unexpired term through the end of 2020. Former City Councilman Kwanzaa Hall (D) and former Morehouse President Robert Franklin (D) are in the runoff. The winner will serve maybe 2-3 weeks before our former State Senator, Nikema Williams (D), is sworn in for a full term in January 2021.
The second runoff election is to fill State Senator Nikema Williams' seat in the Georgia State Senate. Sonya Halpern (D) is running against Linda Pritchett (D).
Early voting for the December 1, 2020 Runoff Election begins on November 9, 2020.
Early Voting Days and Times
Early Voting will take place 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. on the following days:
Early Voting Locations
Georgia law allows residents to vote by absentee ballot, sometimes known as voting by mail.
Residents can download an Absentee Ballot Application and upload it through the Fulton Absentee Portal as a .pdf or .jpg between 1MB and 5 MB. Each submission must have only one application.
Residents can also return an absentee ballot application (e.g., by email, fax, postal mail, or dropbox) or make a written request.
Learn more about absentee voting.
ActivateATL is the project for the City of Atlanta Department of Parks and Recreation new 10-year Comprehensive Master Plan. Learn more at their project website.
They have officially completed the first phase of public engagement and reviewed all the community input. They have also visited all City of Atlanta parks and recreation centers to collect baseline data about their conditions. This information will be used to develop the existing conditions and priorities assessment. They are now entering the Visioning phase and will come back to the community with this vision for another round of public engagement in early Spring 2021.
They are staying connected with the community via social media, a monthly e-newsletter, and a new app, HappiFeet - Atlanta Parks. There's also a new survey that will provide even more insight into community priorities.
5-Min. Image-Based Survey: Take a short survey to provide more insight into the findings from the first phase of public engagement. There was interest in health & wellness, aquatics, trails, and more - they want to find out more!
Sign Up for the ActivateATL E-Newsletter: Stay updated with all things ActivateATL - sign up for the monthly e-newsletter!
HappiFeet - Atlanta Parks App: Download this app to send feedback, photos, videos, maintenance requests, or any questions directly to Dept. of Parks & Rec.
If you have questions or want to reach out to the ActivateATL team, please contact:
Sabina Kasumova | Park Pride
Public Engagement Specialist
City of Atlanta's ActivateATL: Recreation & Parks for All
In the early 1800s, Elijah Paty purchased a tract of land along Clear Creek, which today defines the western boundary of Piedmont Heights. In 1834, Paty sold the land for $450 to Benjamin Walker, who built a grist mill on Clear Creek just south of Plaster’s Bridge Road, today’s Piedmont Avenue. Walker’s mill would have also sold dry goods and other essentials, which would have made it a gathering place for surrounding farmers. Eventually it became the heart of an unincorporated town called Easton, today’s Piedmont Heights.
Walker sold his property in 1857 to his son, Benjamin P. “Doc” Walker, a former Confederate soldier and Fulton County Commissioner, who built a log house on the property up the hill from Clear Creek. The house and the mill were destroyed during the Civil War, and in 1870 Benjamin built a new house on the site and incorporated one of his father’s old millstones in its front facade. In 1887 the Walker home was sold to the Gentlemen’s Driving Club which was then renamed the Piedmont Driving Club. The house was expanded over the following years, but the millstone can still be seen facing Piedmont Avenue.
In 1887, Atlanta held the Piedmont Exposition on the grounds behind the Piedmont Driving Club, dubbed “Piedmont Park” for the occasion, and a second exposition followed in 1889. Then the city’s 1895 great Cotton States and International Exposition on the grounds surpassed them both.
So, what does all this have to do with our neighborhood? Well, the expositions at the end of the 19th century brought streetcar lines almost to Easton, and in 1918 Atlanta expanded across Clear Creek and renamed us “Piedmont Heights.”
--By Bill Seay (Rock Springs Rd.)
Parking generously provided by Midtown Bowl, who's celebrating 60 years in business this year!
We'll be cleaning up the right-of-way area near the former Intown Suites hotel on Monroe Dr past the I-85 Access Rd. Lots of trash needs our attention, plus some general landscaping work!
Bring your own work gloves, pruning shears or loppers.
Wear closed toed shoes, sunscreen and hat.
Wear insect repellent!
PiHi Alliance will provide:
Landscape company assistance
Thanks for your help in keeping PiHi Beautiful!
Sign up to bring a dish during the Thanksgiving holiday to say thanks!
Miss the Piedmont Heights Annual Neighborhood Meeting on Sunday? No worries! Check out the video.
Mason Fine Art has a new exhibition, Untitled opening Thursday, November 12 - plus a video coming out Saturday!
Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Check out the menu at The Buttery ATL!
East Pole's seasonal drink for November is Apple of my Eye, a warm pick-me-up reminiscent of your grandma’s homemade pie, with a twist.
Lots going on with ASW Distillery these days! Be sure you're getting their newsletter.
Sweetwater Brewery being acquired - but not by who you might think...
Fulton County Library has passes to Center for Puppetry Arts, GA State Parks, and more
We welcomed more than 25 new members to PHCA during our recent Membership Drive, but it's never too late to join.
Become an annual member by November 22, and get a free PiHi T-shirt. Or you can join as a monthly member. Learn more...
If you missed our Annual Neighborhood Meeting last Sunday, no worries!
Watch the recording, and check out the presentation here (PDF).
Thanks to our special guests and everyone on the board who made this event an engaging, informative experience!
Our longtime resident historian, Bill Seay, talked about the Lindbergh-Armour Master Plan (LAMP) topic a couple of months ago, and we have some small updates from that project team from the City and their consultants from the Sizemore Group.
The overview of this project, as taken from the project website, is:
"Atlanta City Design identifies the Lindbergh-Armour area as an emerging hub in northeast Atlanta with great potential to support a growing, diverse community with housing and infrastructure built for everyone. To ensure the vision for the Lindbergh-Armour area is realized, the City of Atlanta and MARTA have partnered to create a framework master plan that will build a sense of identity and integrate planning for transit, trails, ecology, and housing. This planning process will deliver an equity-focused community plan that strengthens access to jobs, affordable housing, commerce, and services, all while defining who constitutes the Lindbergh-Armour community."
The first Community Voices meeting was held October 21 when they discussed the questions below. See the presentation and meeting minutes on the project website.
The next Community Voices meeting is anticipated to take place in the first quarter of 2021, with larger public engagement opportunities over the next couple of months. We will keep you apprised of these dates as we learn about them!
The PHCA Board and Planning Committee are involved in these conversations already. We've already noted problems with the single entrance and bottleneck traffic at the Monroe/Armour/I-85 South Access point, as well as the frequent, recurring concrete spillage and flooding that occurs near the Armour-Ottley loop, and other issues; along with the great potential this area holds.
Please share your comments, thoughts, and concerns with the PHCA Board as well as the Lindbergh-Armour project team at: email@example.com
From the AJC: MARTA wants your thoughts on design for station in 'emerging hub' of Atlanta
3:30pm on Zoom & Facebook Live
All residents welcome, not just PHCA Members! Get the latest on what’s happening in PiHi, hear from Councilmember Ide and our APD liaisons, and help us vote in three new board members ready to serve PiHi! RSVP and send questions ahead of time for us and our special guest speakers.
Saturday: Neighborhood Watch Training
9:30am on Zoom
Recently, PiHi has experienced a carjacking and a shopping center burglarized with windows broken (Piedmont & Rock Springs corner). APD responded quickly, and luckily, no one was injured. Learn what you can do to help combat crime in our beloved PiHi community.
You’ve spoken, and we’re listening! Many neighbors are wanting opportunities to connect in person while still practicing pandemic safety precautions. So, we’re looking for neighbors willing to host a very casual BYOB outdoor happy hour in your driveway, front yard, back yard, etc. just for your street (or maybe another 1-2 nearby streets to keep the numbers to a minimum). Speak up if you’re interested in learning more!
Georgia Dept of Transportation has proposed a roundabout in PiHi. The PHCA Board has been discussing their proposal and don’t see that it really provides improvement to the current situation. We’re in the process of proposing an alternate approach. Take a look at the GDOT proposal and let us know your thoughts as we compile our Neighborhood Response.
Welcome to new PiHi Puppy, Aspen. We're delighted to meet this new furry friend.
If you have a new or new-ish pet, send us a photo so we can share your adorable fur baby with our pet-loving community!
Order yours before November 13 to show off your neighborhood pride and celebrate being home and healthy in the Heights!
Next year, we'll have a new design, so don't miss out on this fresh look.
LAST CHANCE to see the WAYFINDING exhibit, showcasing Atlanta photographers at Spalding Nix Fine Art until Nov. 6. Then on Nov. 13, their new exhibit ENSEMBLE opens, featuring two Atlanta natives: Heather Lancaster and Hannah Hanlon. This fun celebration highlights all the artists (more than 30!) that they worked with in 2020.
Congratulations to Midtown Bowl who's celebrating 60 years in business! Reserve your lane today.
Ultimate Bodies by Carlos is partnering with the Atlanta Beltline and JuvoJobs, and they're looking for trainers who can help residents meet their fitness and wellness goals.
Cooks Warehouse is open, but if you prefer curbside pickup, just call the Ansley Mall store at 404-815-4993 to place your order. AND—if you're in the job market, they're hiring!
Fancy Croissant Fridays at The Buttery Atl, located just off Cheshire Bridge. Something special to savor, so get them while they last. And, tons more delicious delights available for curbside pickup within an hour, plus delivery options.
Order online for pickup now available for the Fox Bros. Que-osk in Armour-Ottley – so convenient!
Don't miss out on the Grindhouse Pumpkin Pie Shake—here for November. Pumpkin purée, pumpkin spice, and graham cracker, oh my!
Welcome to our newest members and those who rejoined! THANK YOU for supporting your community!
More than 192 PiHi residents are now PHCA members. #PiHiStrong For the new annual members, we'll be ordering the T-shirts soon and will contact you about how to get your free shirt.
Even though the Membership Drive is over, we welcome new members every day of the year! Please encourage your neighbors to join online at piedmontheights.org!
More Piedmont Heights News & Events...
Piedmont Heights Civic Association
1579 Monroe Dr. NE, Ste. F307
Atlanta, GA 30324