Individual home lots for sale are common as pollen particles in Westside Atlanta right now. But a full potential subdivision down the street from what’s planned to be the city’s largest park? That’s a different story.
A 5.6-acre site has come up for grabs roughly four blocks due west of Westside Park’s initial phase, which is expected to officially open in coming weeks as a regional attraction.
The land alone, as listed April 5, is asking an even $900,000.
Formerly called Westside Park at Bellwood Quarry, the multifaceted greenspace and two-billion-gallon water reservoir has long been pitched as a magnet for Westside investment. Accordingly, a Re/Max Around Atlanta Realty listing for the land in question name-drops the park in its first sentence (along with every big-ticket development from the Gulch to the Benz and BeltLine).
The listing indicates the “incredible development opportunity” had previously been approved for a subdivision of 20 homes, as illustrated in planning documents. We’ve reached out to the broker for more info on that history and what the future could hold but have yet to hear back.
The elephant in the room—Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms’ moratorium on new development around the park—technically, quietly ended last month. But that doesn’t mean recent legislation won’t have an impact on what’s built in the area.
The mayor’s development clampdown, a response to “rapid gentrification” concerns, was enacted in March 2020 for six months and then extended once more until last month. Outlawing new building permits, subdivisions, and rezoning for development, it covered “Westside neighborhoods surrounding the [park],” and Rockdale, Grove Park, and Knight Park/Howell Station were commonly cited as the neighborhoods specifically impacted.
The moratorium prohibiting development is over, but a government source tells Urbanize Atlanta that Bottoms’ “Westside Park Housing Overlay Ordinance” approved by the city council on March 15 has “essentially enshrined the mayor’s moratorium into law.”
The ordinance is meant to “require affordable housing in new neighborhoods around [Westside Park]” to ensure that “as new development occurs, affordable housing will be created for all Atlantans.”
This affordability requirement, described as a first for Atlanta, applies to both rental and for-sale housing. Neighborhoods city officials have specifically mentioned include Grove Park, Center Hill, and Carey Park.
The potential subdivision site, meanwhile, is located a few doors down from Center Hill Park but technically falls within the Almond Park neighborhood, according to Google mapping. Next door is Grove Park, where all new construction was supposed to have ended for a year—but not everyone got that memo, allegedly, per the AJC.
How the new affordability ordinance might impact this potential offering of 20 Westside houses isn’t entirely clear. The site carries an R4A residential zoning designation, which could allow for relatively large residences.
• 0 Center Hill Avenue (Re/Max Around Atlanta Realty)
• Atlanta's largest park is finally coming together. How it looks right now (Urbanize Atlanta)