While Buckhead, Midtown and Downtown garnered shiny new towers and promising mixed-use developments, Atlanta’s Westside languished in anonymity — a collection of vacant lots and dilapidated rail yards.
All that changed a few years ago with the promise of the BeltLine’s Westside Trail. The latest branch of the trail, scheduled to open this summer, will be a three-mile long corridor with 14 access points. Connecting four schools, four parks and 10 previously underserved southwest Atlanta neighborhoods, the Westside Trail also features an arboretum and 30 acres of new greenspace.
Of course the West End’s transformation hasn’t happened overnight. Increasingly priced out of appreciating neighborhoods like Midtown and Virginia Highland, the city’s young, creative class began flocking to the Westside, bringing with them a collection of avant-garde galleries, farm-to-table restaurants, indie coffee shops and start-up breweries.
With the BeltLine on the rise and homes under $200,000 increasingly scarce inside the perimeter, we’ve found five unsung neighborhoods that are still affordable. As parks, trails and transit integrate these neighborhoods into the fabric of the new Atlanta, in the coming years property values are sure to skyrocket.
Located just Southwest of Downtown Atlanta, sleepy Adair Park is about to become big news. This neighborhood comprised of quaint, pre-war Craftsman bungalows is uniquely situated near MARTA’s north-south rail line, the Peachtree Streetcar Corridor and the future home of the BeltLine’s Westside Trail.
Besides abundant transportation options, Adair Park features four pocket parks, leafy streets and homes over 1,500 square feet and under $200,000. With wide-open porches and historic architectural details, many Adair Park homes are primed for renovations. This scenic stomping ground also neighbors the future site of Murphy’s Crossing, an eight-acre greenspace that will serve as one of the BeltLine’s signature parks.
Less than three miles from Downtown Atlanta, this centrally located neighborhood on the rise is home to a bevy of Arts & Crafts bungalows and Queen Anne homes dating from 1915 to 1925. A great option for first-time homeowners, Westview is sandwiched between Adair Park to the north and Perkerson Park to the south.
This former streetcar neighborhood also features convenient access to I-20 and a proposed streetcar station at the corner of Ralph David Abernathy and Cascade Avenue.
Part of the BeltLine’s “model mile,” Westview is located near the beginning of the Westside Trail, which will eventually form a 22-mile arboretum encircling the city. Furthering the neighborhood’s green ambitions, Enota Park, near Westview Cemetery, just received a $600,000 Federal grant to create a multi-purpose play field and a playground and rec space connected to the BeltLine.
With the BeltLine’s Westside Trail running right through northern end of the neighborhood, transit, recreation and higher property values are sure to follow!
Named for its stunning view of the gleaming gold dome, the northern end of Capitol View borders the BeltLine’s Westside Trail. Featuring quick access to I-75, I-85 and I-20, the trail has brought urban renewal to the area, particularly around Dill Avenue and a tax-allocation district on Metropolitan Parkway, which has brought new life and business back to this long-neglected neighborhood.
Other projects that will undoubtedly raise property values include a mixed-use, movie studio redevelopment near Fort McPherson, the redevelopment of the Metropolitan Branch Library and the transition of the Oakland City MARTA station into a transit-oriented community featuring condos, apartments and storefronts.
With abundant transit options and spacious Cape Cods, Colonials and Craftsman bungalows selling for less than $200,000, Capitol View is also located near Perkerson Park, a 50-acre greenspace featuring picnic facilities, basketball courts, tennis courts, baseball fields and a spray ground for cooling off during the summer months.
English Avenue & Vine City
Once known for its infamous, crime-filled “The Bluff,” ambitious redevelopment projects and community support are helping these two neighborhoods reclaim their mid-century, middle class reputations.
Home to Paschal’s Avenue, a soul food landmark that also served as a gathering place for Atlanta’s Civil Rights leaders, English Avenue and Vine City are also home to the Sunset Avenue Historic District and a non-profit job-training center called Westside Works.
With Invest Atlanta providing homebuyers grants worth up to $10,000, and Home Atlanta providing grants for up to 5 percent of a home’s total price, boarded-up and abandoned properties are becoming a thing of the past in this rapidly emerging neighborhood, which is uniquely situated near the BeltLine’s Westside Trail.
With the economic engines of thriving West Midtown and Mercedes-Benz stadium rising just to the North and the East, the neighborhoods are also poised to enjoy two brand-new parks. Rodney Cook Sr. Park and the smaller Boone Park West will solve longstanding flooding issues and feature a playground, an events lawn, an activity lawn and an ecology center.
These promising new parks are small in comparison to the belle of Atlanta’s parks system — Bellwood Quarry and Reservoir Park, a proposed 300-acre park (twice the size of Piedmont Park) that will feature a massive lake and a series of scenic trails connecting to Vine City and English Avenue.