The Atlanta City Council voted on Monday, Oct. 7 to accept the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation’s offer of $17.5 million to help build the 280-acre Westside Park at Bellwood Quarry, which will ultimately become the city’s largest park.
“This is a truly monumental project that will kick-start new development, connect communities and allow us to create a healthier and more sustainable future,” said Councilman Dustin Hillis, whose council district includes the site of the park.
Council members unanimously adopted the Atlanta Beltline development resolution and Blank Foundation money donated to the Atlanta Beltline will be directed toward the new park.
“The Foundation’s Westside Park grant is the latest in the Blank family’s longstanding commitment to investing in Atlanta’s historic Westside neighborhoods, and in parks and greenspaces across Atlanta,” said Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms in an earlier statement. “To date, the Blank Foundation has committed more than $18 million to efforts around parks in our city, and nearly $50 million towards positive Westside neighborhood transformation in the areas of crime and safety, economic inclusion, education, health, and housing. We are grateful to the Blank Family Foundation for their remarkable work to support our city and our One Atlanta vision.”
The Blank Foundation money will pay for restrooms, enhanced drainage and irrigation, a vehicular entrance, a parking lot and a trail connecting the park to the Grove Park neighborhood.
The park’s $26.5 million first phase is due to open next spring, consisting of 25 acres of walking trails, a playground and an overlook into the former granite quarry.
The overall price tag for the multi-phase, multi-year project is at least $400 million.