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Strike one against the Piedmont Park parking deck

The six-story parking deck that proponents want to build in the heart of Piedmont Park has received its first negative review from a government body.

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A Sept. 14 Atlanta Urban Design Commission staff report states that the proposed deck contradicts the vision of Piedmont Park's designer. The report comes after the Piedmont Park Conservancy's board and a mayoral task force approved the deck proposal — and 17 Neighborhood Planning Units (citizen-run councils that consult with City Hall) rejected it.

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The report, which the commission's staff prepared for the 11 commissioners, says the deck "thwarts the basic principles of Olmsted's landscape practices." Frederick Law Olmsted is the father of landscape architecture and designer of city parks such as Piedmont Park and New York City's Central Park.

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The staff's comments are nonbinding recommend-ations to the commission, which is expected to vote on the deck Oct. 5. Likewise, the commission's vote will serve as a nonbinding recommendation to Atlanta City Council, which will take up the issue later this year.

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Opponents of the deck say the report bolsters their claim that the parking deck will be an eyesore.

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"An objective group of people came up with the conclusion that the deck plan doesn't make sense based on design principles," says Doug Abramson, president of Friends of Piedmont Park.

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The UDC will meet Oct. 5, 4 p.m., in Council chambers, 55 Trinity Ave. For more info, visit www.friendsofpiedmontpark.org.



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