Forsyth Garage mural. Image Credit: Neka King

Downtown Dazzles With Local Stories In Lights

By Junior Knox | Atlanta Regional Commission | February 3, 2020

Mural by: Neka King If you’ve been in downtown Atlanta lately, you might have been dazzled by a cluster of brightly lit digital signage. Don’t be fooled, you’re not actually in Times Square – this display is part of the Central Atlanta Progress and the Atlanta Downtown Improvement District (CAP/ADID) Arts & Entertainment District (A&E … Continue Reading →

Downtown Kennesaw

Kennesaw Finds Its Hippest New Greenspace…in the Cemetery

By Kate Sweeney | Atlanta Regional Commission | January 31, 2020

Change is coming to downtown Kennesaw. Amidst a population on the rise, two substantial mixed-use developments are planned that will add restaurants, retail, townhomes, and yes, even a couple more hipster breweries to the northwest city’s roster. City leaders are especially excited about a planned 15-acre project that will redevelop the vacant Martha Moore School, … Continue Reading →

A “For Rent” sign hangs in front of a house.

Data Dive: Who Are Metro Atlanta’s Renters?

By Kate Sweeney | Atlanta Regional Commission | December 31, 2019

Where do metro Atlanta’s renters live? How old are they? What is their racial make-up, and what is their experience of life in the A-T-L? An in-depth blog post from the Atlanta Regional Commission’s data experts provides answers to all these questions—important in a time when the availability of affordable rental properties is slim in … Continue Reading →

Atlanta, Georgia, USA downtown city skyline.

An A-Town Year in Review: 2019

By Junior Knox | Atlanta Regional Commission | December 31, 2019

As we close the books on 2019, we at What’s Next ATL thought it’d be a good time to take a look back at some of the top regional issues and trends that faced metro Atlanta in the past year. Metro ATL’s population popping Metro Atlanta is growing, and that growth isn’t stopping any time … Continue Reading →

A crowd of pedestrians in Roswell, Ga.

What’s a Lifelong Community? And How Can We Get More of Them?

By Kate Sweeney | Atlanta Regional Commission | December 30, 2019

It seems like a simple concept: Build neighborhoods and places that can accommodate people across all stages of life—from toddlers, to twenty-somethings, to those past retirement. Regional planners call them “lifelong communities.” Too often though, neighborhoods in metro Atlanta fail to live up to this promise. Many communities lack the sidewalks and transportation options needed … Continue Reading →

Podcast: Living Small Goes Big

Episode #11 | December 4, 2019 | 25 minutes

Photo Description: ATL ADU CO recently built Cottage Inman in Inman Park  Could that cute little backyard cottage solve housing affordability? Okay, so…no, not by itself. More and more, though, people are looking to accessory dwelling units — ADUs, for short — to add needed variety to metro Atlanta’s housing stock so that people at … Continue Reading →

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bikes leaning against a bike rack

Podcast: How a Community Transforms, Part 2

Episode #9 | November 20, 2019 | 22 minutes

 Whether you call it new urbanism, live-work-play or something else, a certain type of development is sweeping the country right now — and making a big splash right here in the ATL. And despite the fact that this phenom’ is often called “urbanism,” many suburban metro ATL communities are leading the way in the … Continue Reading →

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Downtown Woodstock 1900s

Podcast: How a Community Transforms, Part 1

Episode #8 | November 13, 2019 | 18 minutes

How did it come to be that a small city a full 30 miles north of the city of Atlanta set the precedent for so-called “urban” design — the sort of pedestrian-friendly planning that’s taking suburban and in-town neighborhoods alike by storm? In this episode, we hear the story of Woodstock, Georgia, long a fairly-typical … Continue Reading →

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A picture of the Kendeda Building

What Makes GA Tech’s Kendeda the Southeast’s Most Sustainable Building

By Jo-Leigh Warren | November 8, 2019

It’s alive! We’re not talking about Frankenstein, although the Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design is a marvel of modern science. This “living building,” as it’s called, was constructed to the Living Building Challenge 3.1 certification. This designation is given to buildings that meet all 20 “imperatives” of the Living Building Challenge, which include “green” … Continue Reading →

Kids’ postcards and letters to the distant year of 2020, penned in the late ‘90s

Podcast: Metro Atlanta Time Machine

Episode #7 | November 8, 2019 | 25 minutes

It’s good to be back! Two modest questions kick off Season 2: What will metro Atlanta look like in 2050? And what do we do now, to make it the place we want? Internationally-renowned futurist Glen Hiemstra fills us in on the large-scale trends he says will shape the region between now and 2050, and … Continue Reading →

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Community members gather at a public forum to learn about and weigh in on the Chattahoochee River plan.

See Updates to Chattahoochee River Plan and Help Shape its Future

By Kate Sweeney | Atlanta Regional Commission | October 31, 2019

Residents will get another chance to weigh in on proposed plans now taking shape to reimagine a 100-mile public realm along the Chattahoochee River, while hearing about updates on significant progress that’s been made. On Nov. 2, the Chattahoochee Working Group will offer a free public forum at C.T. Martin Natatorium and Recreation Center in … Continue Reading →

Season 2 of the What’s Next ATL podcast is almost here. Listen to the trailer.

Episode #1 | October 30, 2019 | 2 minutes

 Season 2 is almost here. This time around, we’re asking one simple question: How do we build the communities we want? From the big-picture prognostications for our next 30 years, to metro Atlanta’s changing cities and neighborhoods, to the future of work, down to the very homes we live in, we’ll explore how to … Continue Reading →

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Help Shape the Region’s Future at ‘Pop-Up’ Open Houses

By Paul Donsky | Atlanta Regional Commission | September 23, 2019

Want to have a say in how metro Atlanta grows and changes over the next three decades? Now’s your chance. A series of pop-up open houses are planned across the region, from Oct. 4 through Nov. 2, that offer a chance to learn about regional planning along with hot topics like transportation technology and housing … Continue Reading →

Crowd of people at Atlanta festival

Metro ATL Adds 72,500 People in Past Year. What Does this Growth Mean?

By Junior Knox | Atlanta Regional Commission | August 28, 2019

It’s probably not shocking to hear that metro Atlanta is adding more people. Just take a look at all the construction cranes dotting the skyline, or the skyrocketing rents, for that matter. What might come as a surprise is how the metro is growing, and where. The 10-county metro area added another 72,500 residents in … Continue Reading →

Atlanta Skyline

You’re Not Imagining It – Cost of Living Is Rising in Metro Atlanta

By Junior Knox | Atlanta Regional Commission | August 14, 2019

Healthcare. Groceries. Housing. If it feels like all of it is getting more expensive, that’s because it is. The cost of living is increasing steadily in metro areas, including the Atlanta region – but not at the same pace or in the same way. The data experts at Atlanta Regional Commission took a look at … Continue Reading →

Roswell WalkUp

Metro Atlanta’s Walkable Urban Centers Put the Region in the Top 10

By Junior Knox | Atlanta Regional Commission | August 2, 2019

Metro Atlanta has a reputation for car-based sprawl. But, according to a recent national report, the region has more walkable urban centers than many of our peers, and those centers may be key to the region’s future economic success. That is, if the social and equity implications of success can be managed. The 2019 Foot … Continue Reading →