Through special projects and partnerships across Midtown, the energy on our streets, sidewalks and plazas in 2016 was unforgettable.
Special project with MARTA and Woodruff Arts Center re-energizes plaza space
In 2016, MARTA and the Woodruff Arts Center welcomed in a trial project that brought together the very best of placemaking, transit and the arts. The concrete plaza at the Arts Center MARTA station was converted into Midtown’s “front porch,” where people were invited to sit, play games, read, enjoy live piano music and watch the world go by.
Incorporating whimsical art elements throughout from High Museum artist-in-residence Jaime Hayon, the project created a seamless connection between the MARTA station and the Woodruff Arts Center campus. Midtown Alliance also enlisted landscape architect firm Sylvatica Studio as well as local artists Gina Thompson and Jeremy Ray to incorporate short-term exterior enhancements and activities that added a colorful overlay to the station’s plaza space.
This project demonstrated the potential for establishing a sense of place and created common ground for the Midtown community through music. Watch how one musician came to appreciate the new community space:
Midtown Atlanta’s rich history shared on new wayfinding signs
Working with the Atlanta History Center, Midtown Alliance developed a series of new wayfinding signs that tell the stories of our neighborhood across the decades. The signs include a map on one side and historical narrative on the other, with topics ranging from civil rights and counterculture to architecture and transportation. This exhibit reinforces Midtown Alliance’s goals to help people explore the district on foot.
MIDTOWN Letters Spell “Hottest Spot in Town”
One imperative for Midtown is to “think beyond the building” by adding enhancements in private and public spaces. North American Properties (NAP) - the team behind Atlantic Station, Avalon and now Colony Square - brought a new landmark to the district with their installation of giant, three-dimensional letters that spell out “MIDTOWN.” Standing 8-feet-tall and 40-feet-wide, the letters anchor the corner of Peachtree Street and 15th Street, and are inspired by the Midtown Alliance logo. Since launch, the project has gained popularity among locals and visitors alike who are capturing their interactions with the larger-than-life structure via Colony Square’s social media campaign #IAmMidtown.
"Almost as soon as the letters appeared, people began taking selfies with them, sometimes posting them on social media with the hashtag #IAmMidtown."
More fun out on the lawn
In 2016, Midtown Alliance brought new enhancements to the temporary pocket park at 10th and Peachtree Streets, including new landscaping, games and seating. In the spirit of mutual goodwill, the greenspace is leased to Midtown Alliance for $1 each year through a partnership with Dewberry Capital Corporation.
People spending time in the district enjoyed the glow of 65,000 lights illuminating Midtown plaza and park spaces as part of our seasonal holiday lighting project, which debuted a giant 12-point star in the temporary park at 10th and Peachtree.
Smiling and silly faces welcome
Midtown Alliance brought out a special photo booth to Atlanta Streets Alive and other outdoor events in 2016, complete with props to capture and memorialize people having fun along Peachtree Street.
Heard it through the grapevine: Pop-up vineyardThe 2016 Atlanta Food & Wine Festival brought to Midtown the first-of-its-kind “urban vineyard,” creating a pastoral vibe on an undeveloped tract of land near 14th and Peachtree, between soaring Midtown skyscrapers. Following their event, festival organizers turned the vineyard over to Midtown Alliance and PNC to keep it going for the rest of June with community programming. Longtime Midtown Alliance member PNC hosted a free, “Arts in the Vineyard” weekly series at lunchtime, featuring performances from the Alliance Theatre, The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, The Hambidge Center and local artists.
New Public Art to Grace the Corner of 10th and Peachtree
A rolling stone gathers no moss. The famed Rockspinner will be leaving Midtown this year, after a long visit that has delighted many people in our community. Midtown Alliance’s lease for the 22,000 lb. kinetic art fixture is set to expire soon, and we’re busy searching for a new installation that may arrive by springtime.