Atlanta’s 2021 Comprehensive Development Plan
I wish I could tell you that I understood exactly how the housing ideas in the proposed CDP and in Amir Farokhi’s suggested zoning changes might affect our overall tree canopy. I really can’t. Not at the moment.
As I understand it, the next draft of the CDP will be released on September 13, and then the entire document will be up for adoption by the City Council in October. As for Amir’s proposals, as he said himself at the IPNA meeting, they face an uncertain future in an election year.
In any case, Kronberg Urbanists + Architects is one group that has accepted the challenge of answering this broad question:
If all the people who are expected to move to Atlanta in the next decades actually show up (will they?), where we gonna put them all?
As many of you know, a lot of the talk right now is about changes that will make it possible (or just easier) to build smaller multi-family buildings and accessory dwelling units in neighborhoods where currently it’s mostly single-family residences, in order to supply the so-called “missing middle” categories of housing.
Can 4,000 quadruplexes, octoplexes., and 12-plexes, along with 3,000 ADUs, plus 2,500 low- to midrise buildings, together with 1,000 towers be constructed in Atlanta without having to take down a lot of trees? I don’t see how. That’s a lot of foundations to dig, a lot of roofs to put up. And the fact is, the vast majority of our trees are on privately owned lots.
All I can say at this point about the projected growth in population and its impact on trees is this: let’s make sure as a city that (1) we’re upfront about the choices we’re making and (2) we have a plan to mitigate the negative consequences of those choices.
Jeanne and I are in Colorado on vacation. You know what Atlanta needs? Aspen trees. Golly, they’re so purdy:
The Drip Drip Drip of Trees Coming Down
The City of Atlanta makes it possible for anyone to sign up for alerts when applications are filed for permits to remove trees or complaints are registered with the Arborist Division of the Bureau of Buildings.
Wisely or not, I signed up. Now, every time I get a new text message on my phone, I dread seeing that yet another tree in 30307 may soon be coming down.
Best Films about Trees and Forests
Do you have a favorite film that prominently features trees? Whether a feature film or a documentary? If so, leave a comment on this post. I’m always looking for recommendations!
One film I saw not too long ago and enjoyed was Leave No Trace, based on a true story:
My children often watched My Neighbor Totoro when they were young, and I will freely admit that I never got tired of watching with them. The trees in this film are literally and figuratively magical!
The Revenant is a film with several extraordinary images that have stayed with me, even as I have (thankfully) forgotten details of the hyper-violent plot.
There’s another film that is worth watching primarily for its arboreal beauty. It’s The New World, by Terrence Malick, a lyrical retelling of the Pocahontas legend. The image of Pocahontas wearing a dress and standing on the branch of a tree growing in a formal English garden is — for anyone interested in the forest in human history — absolutely breathtaking.