Midtown: Growing Green
Increasingly, market forces are favoring cities and districts that are vibrant, walkable, transit-rich, and “green.” Businesses, investors, and college graduates are all factoring sustainability into their decisions on where to locate.
Midtown Atlanta is uniquely positioned to be a leader in sustainability: it has the physical building blocks in place to lead in this area including a pedestrian-friendly street grid, a dense and diverse mix of land uses, robust transit options, and significant green space. In addition, many of Midtown’s property owners, businesses, institutions, and residents have already taken the initiative to become more sustainable, as evidenced by the growing portfolio of LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and Energy Star-rated buildings, and their support of Midtown Alliance’s existing green initiatives.
In 2012, Midtown Alliance completed a sustainability action plan called Greenprint Midtown that established a vision and framework for meeting these market demands. Through extensive community input and technical analysis, the Greenprint outlined a series of recommended programs and initiatives in the areas of energy, transportation, open space, water, and waste. Successful implementation of this plan requires the participation of every sector of the community – residents, businesses, property owners, and employees. The collective efforts of the community around sustainability is being captured as part of the Midtown EcoDistrict.
Midtown Alliance is already putting the plan into action - first by "greening up" our own operations. In 2012, we partnered with the City of Atlanta to provide recycling cans throughout the district, began using rainwater to irrigate the more than 700 trees planted along streets and sidewalks, and encourage fifteen buildings to take the Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge. In 2013, the Midtown EcoDistrict workplan includes the following initiatives to further integrate sustainability into all we do:
- Recognize those individuals and entities that are actively contributing to the Midtown EcoDistrict
- Begin construction on what will become Atlanta's "green" street, Juniper Street
- Continue to promote the Atlanta Better Buildings to improve energy and water efficiency throughout the District
- Launch the Midtown EcoDistrict Education Series to inform building managers, restaurants, residents and employers on sustainability best practices
- Develop new temporary "pocket" parks and identify long-term opportunities for permanent park space
- Partner with the Atlanta Botanical Garden to develop a WaterWise demonstration garden
- Continue to build out Midtown's bicycle network with high quality lanes, install additional bike racks and explore a bike sharing program with the City of Atlanta
- Identify opportunities to develop innovative demonstration projects within the District such as electric vehicle charging stations, solar energy installations, or "next bus" LED signs at bus stops
- Communicate the progress of the Midtown EcoDistrict through print, web and social media outlets
The Midtown EcoDistrict provides an opportunity to celebrate existing and future efforts to go green, inspire others to participate, and measure and support success. Contact us to find out you can get involved.
A Coalition of the Willing
Greenprint Midtown demonstrates our community's sustainability vision and action plan. Read more about this community-powered effort to create a more sustainable Midtown Atlanta.
Executive Summary (pdf)
Opportunities abound for businesses and properties to learn more about sustainability. Below are a few upcoming events. And stay tuned for the launch of the new EcoDistrict Education series, hosted by Midtown Alliance, to launch soon.
Contact us to find out how to register for Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge events, and to learn more.
Creating the Midtown EcoDistrict
See how the Midtown Alliance and Midtown businesses are moving sustainability forward.