GEORGIA AVENUE REDEVELOPMENT
LOCATION: Summerhill, Atlanta, GA
SIZE: 37,000 SF / 10 buildings
STATUS: Shell completed Spring 2018
AWARDS: 2019 UDC Community Design Award
2019 UDC Award of Excellence
In a project that leveraged all KUA’s varied skills and expertise, the firm was hired to lead the masterplanning and renovation effort to stitch together and activate numerous underutilized parcels along Georgia Avenue. Located in the shadow of the former Turner Field, Georgia Avenue and the Summerhill neighborhood were the setting of many significant events in Atlanta’s civil rights history. Aside from cosmetic work performed before the 1996 Olympics, the site sat dormant for decades following the decline of the neighborhood spurred by the construction of the stadium. Murals and graffiti adorned the crumbling buildings, whose potential for vibrant life was still apparent to those who could see past the rough exterior.
KUA’s strategy for the redevelopment of the district involved maximizing outdoor shared space and minimizing vehicle parking in order to create a vibrant, walkable destination within the constraints of a limited first phase budget. Following the conclusion of the masterplanning phase, KUA designed and oversaw the renovation of eight existing buildings and the construction of two new buildings in the district. Extensive structural repairs were required to bring the buildings back to an occupiable state, but the design team chose to apply a light touch to cosmetic work, leaving many of the existing murals in place and allowing the unique character to shine through in this next chapter in the story of the historic site.