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ARC Celebrates Metro Atlanta’s Remarkable Journey at 2016 State of the Region Breakfast

Posted on: Oct 28, 2016

Contact: Jim Jaquish
Phone: 404.463.3194

(ATLANTA – Oct 28, 2016)

October 28, 2016) More than 1,200 elected, business and civic leaders came together at the Atlanta Regional Commission’s (ARC) State of the Region breakfast today to celebrate metro Atlanta’s remarkable journey.

Ambassador Andrew Young reflected on the milestones that have distinguished metro Atlanta from other southeastern cities. Doug Hooker, ARC executive director, presented the State of the Region message, focusing on the progress metro Atlanta has made in recent years and highlighting key collaborative efforts taking place across the region.

“We’ve come a long way since our region’s journey began back in 1837. We’ve risen from the ashes of war, fostered the Civil Rights movement, joined together to host the Centennial Olympic Games, and built a globally competitive economy,” said Hooker. “But our region’s journey is far from complete. As a regional community, we must constantly evolve to adapt to a fast-changing world and anticipate new challenges. Other regions aren’t standing still, and neither can we.”

Also during the event, ARC released the results of the fourth Metro Atlanta Speaks public opinion survey, which provides key insights into the mood and priorities of metro Atlanta residents. Among the key findings:

  • Transportation remains the region’s top concern for the third-straight year, with 25 percent of those surveyed saying it was the biggest problem facing the region.
  • 92 percent of respondents said public transit is important to the region’s future.
  • Nearly half of those surveyed said job opportunities in the region are “excellent” or “good” — up from about one in three in 2013.

The agency also presented the 18th annual Developments of Excellence Awards. The first Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to John C. Portman Jr., in recognition of his extraordinary vision as an architect, developer and community leader.

The top Development of Excellence award went to the offices of Kronberg Wall architects, located in a renovated historic church in Atlanta’s Reynoldstown neighborhood. Other winners were:

  • Lee Street Park & Amphitheater, City of Jonesboro
  • Belmont mixed-use development in Smyrna, by Halpern Enterprises
  • Walgreens in Historic Five Points Olympia Building,
  • The Atlanta region’s three national parks – Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site.

The third Harry West Visionary Leadership Award was presented to Craig Lesser, a leader in metro Atlanta’s economic development community who helped launch the Atlanta Regional Economic Competitiveness Strategy.

The event closed with a look ahead to the Atlanta region’s future, featuring two of ARC’s Millennial Advisory Panel members.