Centennial Park aging well
“There’s no question that it’s the most important physical legacy of our Games because of what it has encouraged to take place around it and the life it’s breathed back into an important part of our urban core,” Payne said in a recent interview, admitting even he’s surprised by the park’s enduring impact.
A new wave of residential development also is starting. Post Properties plans a more than 400-unit apartment development, while developer Kaplan has another residential project in the pipeline.
A.J. Robinson, president of CEO of Central Atlanta Progress, said he hopes densification will help knit downtown together with Vine City and other Westside neighborhoods where the Atlanta Falcons and city have committed to redevelopment as part of the new Mercedes-Benz stadium plan.
“The Olympics was an emblem of Atlanta’s we-can-do-it spirit,” Robinson said, ranking the park along with the Beltline and Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport as public works projects for the ages.
Poe, the congress center chief executive, said the park’s redesign will help ensure that legacy continues. Though corporate donations will largely pay for the work, the Adopt-a-Brick program is being brought back to renew public engagement.
“We’ve gotten inquiries throughout the years from people about buying bricks,” Poe said, particularly from families that have added children or grandchildren since the Games.