Like neighborhoods from Kirkwood to Cabbagetown and Cascade, Midtown is in the process of converting more street spaces created for vehicles into active hangouts for human beings.

Midtown Alliance reports this week that construction on two parklets—that is, pint-size seating areas or greenspaces installed alongside public sidewalks—is nearly finished in former Spring Street parking spaces. It’s one of four locations where new parklets are scheduled to be installed around Midtown.

The pergolas and benches are located between Peachtree Place and 8th Street, outside the University House building. They’ll join less permanent parklets already installed around Midtown in locations such as Myrtle Street and Peachtree Place, outside Dancing Goats Coffee Bar.

As seen in 2020, drivers (allegedly) ignored new bike lanes to park on/near spaces where Spring Street parklets are currently being installed. Josh Green/Urbanize Atlanta

The Spring Street parklets will see temporary furniture and string lights installed soon, with more permanent furniture scheduled to be added sometime this fall, according to Midtown Alliance.

The parklets coincide with Atlanta Department of Transportation’s efforts to install quick-build bike lanes on Spring and West Peachtree streets through Midtown. Some of the on-street parking spaces are being rendered unusable by barrier-separate bike lanes—though you  can't underestimate Atlantans’ creativity when it comes to improper parking.

Midtown Alliance fielded input from retail and restaurant tenants along the Spring Street and West Peachtree Street corridors before moving forward with parklet design and construction, according to the nonprofit business and community leadership agency.

Pergolas being installed along Spring Street as part of a parklet initiative near the University House student housing building. Midtown Alliance

Renderings for how the finished Spring Street parklets should look and function between Peachtree Place and 8th Street. Midtown Alliance

All told, the parklets will consume 19 parking spaces and a new bulb-out created where 13th meets West Peachtree Street, beside McCray’s Tavern.

Other parklets will pop up outside The Standard student apartments (on Spring, between 3rd and 4th streets) and the AT&T building (West Peachtree Street at 13th Street).  

The previous on-street conditions around Midtown where parklets are being installed. Midtown Alliance

Midtown Alliance

Meanwhile, the next phase of bike lanes implementation in Midtown will add lanes stretching farther north on both Spring and West Peachtree streets, connecting with an existing lane on 17th Street that heads west to Atlantic Station.

Midtown Alliance reps have previously said those lane extensions will come once the three-tower Midtown Union project removes its lane closure along 17th Street. The mixed-use venture is expected to finish construction late this year.

Recent Midtown news, discussion (Urbanize Atlanta)