About the Atlanta Regional Commission

Posted in: About ARC

The world is changing fast. It’s more complex and connected than ever before. The only certainty, it seems, is change.

Here in metro Atlanta, our population is booming and growing more diverse. We’re living longer, too.

The Atlanta Regional Commission is charged with peering into the future and working with our partners across the community to plan for a better, brighter tomorrow.

On any given day, ARC works with local jurisdictions and various regional partners to:

The agency also serves as a regional convener, bringing diverse stakeholders to the table to address the most important issues facing metro Atlanta.

ARC’s member governments are Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry and Rockdale counties, and the city of Atlanta.

 ARC: Improving the Region’s Quality of Life

Regional Planning to ‘Win the Future’

Regional planning has helped metro Atlanta become one of the nation’s largest, most dynamic regions – and a major player on the global stage.

The Atlanta Region’s Plan

ARC is responsible for developing and updating the Atlanta Region’s Plan, a long-range blueprint that details the investments needed to ensure metro Atlanta’s future success and improve the region’s quality of life.

The 25-year plan, developed with ARC’s community partners and with robust public input, aims to “Win the Future” by providing world-class infrastructure, building a competitive economy and ensuring the region is comprised of healthy, livable communities.

The Atlanta Region’s Plan includes a $93.6 billion investment in transportation infrastructure through 2040 to improve mobility in the region and provide commuting alternatives.

Key elements include a network of managed toll lanes, an expanded transit network, improved arterial roads and highway interchanges, and improved bicycle and pedestrian options.

ARC’s Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) prioritizes spending on transportation projects in the 20-county Atlanta region over the next two decades.

Regional planning has helped shape the region. Important achievements include:

  • Developing a plan for the first parallel runway system in the nation, helping the region’s airport become the world’s most traveled
  • Developing plans for the first rapid rail system in the South
  • Protecting the Chattahoochee River in metro Atlanta
  • Creating the Livable Centers Initiative, which fosters the development of walk-friendly, bike-friendly communities.

Providing Services to Improve Quality of Life

Healthy Living and Healthy Aging

ARC supports healthy living and healthy aging throughout metro Atlanta by offering a range of services designed to ensure a high quality of life for people of all ages and abilities.

For older adults and people with disabilities, ARC provides access to essential services such as transportation and in-home personal care. ARC’s Empowerline enables persons to connect online or by phone to obtain assistance in navigating aging and disability- related information and services, as well as opportunities to volunteer and remain active.

Workforce Solutions for Job-Seekers and Employers

ARC’s WorkSource Atlanta Regional offers services for businesses seeking a skilled workforce, including training and skills development for new and existing employees, assistance with employee recruitment, and data tools that provide insight into labor market trends. WorkSource Atlanta Regional also provides services for job seekers, including education and skills development.

ARC Leadership

ARC Chairman, Kerry Armstrong

Kerry Armstrong, ARC Board Chair

Anna Roach, Executive Director & CEO
(view bio)

ARC Board

ARC is governed by a 41-member board that consists of:

  • The county commission chair from each of the 11 member counties
  • The mayor and a council member from the region’s largest city (City of Atlanta)
  • One mayor from each of the 11 member counties, with the exception of Fulton, which has two mayoral representatives (one from north Fulton and one from south Fulton).
  • A representative from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs
  • 15 citizen members who are selected by the ARC board’s elected officials. ARC citizen member district map

The ARC Board meets every other month at 1:30 p.m. on the second Wednesday of each month (January, March, May, July, September, November).

ARC Board Resources

Next Meeting
Meeting date & time Location
October 11, 2023
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
229 Peachtree Street Northeast, Atlanta, GA
Room: Harry West Conference Center

Upcoming Meetings  |  Meeting Archives

For more information, visit the ARC Board and Committees page.

ARC Organizational Structure

Office of the Executive Director

The Office of the Executive Director is responsible for the overall management of the Atlanta Regional Commission as well as ARC Board policy coordination and the building of civic partnerships.

Contact Office of the Executive Director

ARC Operational Programs

The Atlanta Regional Commission’s  programs cover a range of planning and programmatic initiatives in the areas of transportation and mobility, community development, water resources, aging, workforce development, homeland security and leadership development.

Key activities include the development and maintenance of the Atlanta Region’s Plan, the region’s comprehensive long-range blueprint, and development of the Regional Transportation Plan, Living Beyond Expectations Strategic Plan and regional Water Resources Management Plan. Staff assist local governments in the development of regional plans and programs, reviews local comprehensive plans and Developments of Regional Impact (DRI) and provides critical services for older adults. 

ARC programs and services include:

  • Community Development/Metro ATL Housing Strategy/Economic Competitiveness Strategy
  • Mobility/TDM Services
  • Natural Resources
  • Research & Analytics
  • Transportation Access and Regional Planning
  • Aging and Independence Services
  • Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) – Homeland Security
  • Workforce Development
  • ARC Leadership Programs (RLI, LINK, ALMA, MARC)

Mike Alexander, Senior Director
Chief Operating Officer
email: malexander@atlantaregional.org

Office of External Affairs

The Office of External Affairs oversees ARC’s efforts to build stronger networks for regional action and progress through communications and marketing, government affairs and community engagement. The OEA is also responsible for the agency’s strategic framework development and supporting the goals and objectives of ARC and fostering greater public awareness of the agency’s programs and purposes.

The Office of External Affairs includes the following ARC programs and services:

  • Agency Strategy Framework
  • Communications
  • Community & Corporate Engagement
  • Creative Design
  • Digital Media & Strategy
  • Event Planning
  • Governmental Affairs

Malika Reed Wilkins, PhD, APR
Chief External Affairs Officer & Chief Strategy Officer
email: mwilkins@atlantaregional.org


ARC Legal Designations

  • ARC is designated as a Metropolitan Area Planning and Development Commission as well as a Regional Commission under the laws of the state of Georgia. As such, ARC operates under rules promulgated by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.
  • ARC is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and is responsible for developing a multi-modal, financially constrained transportation plan that meets all federal transportation and Clean Air Act planning requirements.
  • ARC serves as the federally designated Area Agency on Aging for the Atlanta region, providing services and policy guidance to improve the quality of life of older adults.
  • ARC provides planning staff to the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District, which develops comprehensive regional and watershed-specific water resources plans to be implemented by local governments in the 15-county metro Atlanta region.
  • ARC serves as the administrative agency for the Atlanta Regional Workforce Development Board for Cherokee, Clayton, Douglas, Fayette, Gwinnett, Henry and Rockdale counties.
  • ARC serves as the local administrative agency for the Atlanta Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI), which prepares and coordinates the region’s response and recovery to homeland security issues.

ARC Strategic Framework


One Great Region

Mission Statement

The Atlanta Regional Commission fosters thriving communities for all within the Atlanta region through collaborative, data-informed planning and investments.

Our Goals

  1. Healthy, safe, livable communities in the Atlanta metro area.
  2. Strategic investments in people, infrastructure, mobility, and preserving natural resources.
  3. Regional services delivered with operational excellence and efficiency.
  4. Diverse stakeholders engage and take a regional approach to solve local issues.
  5. A competitive economy that is inclusive, innovative, and resilient.

Our Core Values

Excellence | A commitment to doing our best and going above and beyond in every facet of our work allowing for innovative practices and actions to be created while ensuring our agency’s and our colleague’s success.

Equity | We represent a belief that there are some things which people should have, that there are basic needs that should be fulfilled, that burdens and rewards should not be spread too divergently across the community, and that policy should be directed with impartiality, fairness and justice towards these ends.

Integrity | In our conduct, communication, and collaboration with each other and the region’s residents, we will act with consistency, honesty, transparency, fairness and accountability within and across each of our responsibilities and functions.

ARC Brochure

ARC Brochure

ARC’s Brochure

Here’s a handy quick-reference tri-fold brochure.

ARC Brochure


Funding for ARC’s plans and programs comes from a variety of sources, including grants from federal and state agencies and from private sources. Constituent local governments contribute funds annually for ARC operations, as stipulated by Georgia law. These funds are used to match federal and state dollars.