First Slice 9/18/15: Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks giveth and the city taketh away

City says Midtown doesn't get to keep its rainbow crosswalks, plus more news.

So about those rainbow crosswalks in Midtown... They're not going to be there forever after all. The city has done an about-face and pulled the project's permanent status, citing "public safety" concerns. Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks will be allowed to paint the intersection of 10th Street and Piedmont Ave. for Atlanta Pride in October, but officials say the art must be removed after the event ends.
?Music Midtown kicks off this afternoon, and residents living near the festival grounds at Piedmont Park are upset about the traffic it's causing. Many are especially worried that security workers have failed to provide safe routes for pedestrians and cyclists near the venue.
?Atlanta police are investigating a string of bedeviling wheel thefts in northwest Atlanta. It appears the rogue bandits are snatching wheels and tires and leaving the cars on cinder blocks. Vehicle break-ins are also on the rise, up as much as 6 percent this year.
?The social media battle between Mayor Kasim Reed and public safety workers' unions continues, as the Atlanta Professional Firefighters Association this week released a three-minute YouTube video criticizing Reed's refusal to grant new raises while the two parties are involved in a lawsuit over pension reform.
?"Atlanta was built by people who drive cars for people who drive cars, and no amount of wishing we were Portland, Ore., will make it so." Buckhead residents speak out against the growing local "bicycle lobby."
?The numbers are in, and this year's Atlanta Beltline Lantern Parade was the largest yet, with an estimated 60,000 attendees. See a full recap and photo gallery on the Beltline's site.

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