Why Soccer Fields Are Sprouting Up at Atlanta’s Transit Stations

October 23,2018

Adina Solomon, CityLab

Almost every day, you can find people playing soccer on MARTA fields after school or work, running across the bright green artificial turf. Each field is 90 to 100 feet long, about a third the length of a standard high-school soccer field.

“It’s straightforward enough to go and build a mini soccer field,” says Phil Hill, executive director of Soccer in the Streets. “But it really is a case of if you will build it, they will not come. You could build these things and nothing would happen.” That’s why, in addition to children’s teams, Soccer in the Streets has adult leagues and weekend pick-up games.

Patel and other people behind the fields hope they will bring the surrounding communities together and perhaps add another facet to Atlanta’s transit stations.

“It’s just mind-blowing to see a community show up,” Patel says. “We’re seeing the community come out, families interacting socially, and it’s becoming a third space.”

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