First conceived by Ryan Gravel, a Georgia Tech student, in 1999, the project is reclaiming twenty-two miles of historic railroad corridors circling downtown Atlanta for trails, parks, and bike paths that connect forty-five neighborhoods in the city. The new Woodruff grant, which boosts total private sector investment in the project to more than $41 million, will support development of a connection between the Eastside Trail and Historic Fourth Ward Park, as well as development of the Eastside Trail through Reynoldstown.
To date, three trail segments are in place and four new or renovated parks are open to the public. The project also encompasses new affordable housing and provides programs such as the Atlanta BeltLine Running Series and Art on the Atlanta BeltLine, both popular with the public.
"The Atlanta BeltLine is a critical priority for the City of Atlanta, and the private sector has been a tremendous partner in its accelerated progress over the last several years," said Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed. "I applaud the Woodruff Foundation for their generous gift and confidence in the Atlanta BeltLine's ability to connect communities, revitalize neighborhoods, and redevelop entire areas of Atlanta."