Dear WRS, Inc. & Mayor Reed: See Georgia Capitol from Five Points

Thrilled for Planned New Underground Neighborhood.

But, the Georgia Capitol should, and could, be seen from Five Points, Atlanta.

This is the third, and best, opportunity to recreate Underground Atlanta and energize Atlanta’s historical center at Five Points. The decision to build high-rise residential at Underground Atlanta is brilliant.

But, please don’t do it while ignoring Five Points. This is the historic center of the city. It needs to be dynamic and memorable. That could make it the NEW center of the city.

The main assets south of Five Points are the gold domed Georgia Capitol building and Art Deco Atlanta City Hall.

The new urban design for the area should allow direct views and a direct walk to the Capitol– through the Underground neighborhood. It would draw people into the historic area, making the Underground District a neighborhood you go through, on the way to the most important building in the great State of 10 million people.

The parking garage between Decatur, Peachtree, Wall and Pryor absolutely must go. Never has it been more important to raze a building in Atlanta– and hundreds have been razed.


This is an aerial view from Five Points. The fountains and gardens are designed to draw your eye to the Capitol Dome, whose gold was found at the nation’s first Gold Rush in Dahlonega, Georgia. The tan-colored buildings are proposed new residential towers.

The orange-toned buildings are rehabilitated. Closest to the Capitol is the (proposed before) State of Georgia Museum, in the old World of Coke– a great building with excellent potential, especially now given this new axis. To the left is the old Georgia Railroad Freight Depot. It desperately needs its original beautiful three-story front to be reconstructed, missing for 150 years. The important building, one of the oldest in Atlanta, but just one floor now, cannot hold its own within the raised viaducts and towers of today’s Atlanta. This would make a great Atlanta Railroad Museum, especially with the public’s renewed interest in rail.

ga rr freight depot
The Georgia Railroad Freight Depot, ca. 1864


The Georgia Railroad Freight Depot today, which can be seen– just below the Central Ave/Peachtree Center Ave viaduct. The left portion, with granite quoins (corners), was originally 3 floors as shown above, with its beautiful cupola and wrought iron balcony.


Finally, it wouldn’t hurt to bring back the bright neon lights of the 1940’s and 50’s Atlanta. City Hall needs to put forth an ordinance for oversized colorful signage to go with the historical Coca-Cola sign on the Olympia Building. This would give the city new income in advertising dollars.

Atlanta theatre district– all lit up– in the 1950’s.
The Olympia Building recently restored by Walgreens. People need a reason to go south from here.

No, it’s not like Times Square– it’s not Piccadilly Circus in London, or Munich, Hong Kong and many other exciting cities of the world which have highly lighted main squares–

 it is the Dynamic Alpha City of Atlanta.

Five Points to Capitol Gardens and Fountains Axis


Addendum  2/3/2016:

This could be the view from 5 Points toward the Capitol:

5 Points1
New Kimball House housing or hotel on left, pedestrian axis to Capitol, center, and Plaza Park Grill / retail on right.  The original Kimball House Hotel graced this block with Edwardian brick and tall turrets. 1950’s modern Plaza Park was one block south.



Underground new2
Proposed mixed-use development showing 30-story, 25-story and mid-rise residential with retail at street level. Peachtree St at left, Wall Street fronts both sites.


Underground new3
View from Alabama St, Underground Atlanta, showing brick loft residential building on right.


Underground new
View of turreted Kimball House from Marietta Street. Peachtree Street is in the foreground.

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