The James M. Cox Foundation announced a $5 million grant to develop the Atlanta BeltLine's Westside Trail. The Atlanta BeltLine is one of the nation's largest urban redevelopment programs that will provide a network of public parks, multi-use trails and transit along a 22-mile railroad corridor that encircles the City of Atlanta.
Upon completion, the BeltLine will connect 45 intown neighborhoods.
The Westside Trail, a three-mile path in the BeltLine's southwest corridor, will connect four schools and four parks. Hundreds of native trees will line the trail, which will create 40 acres of new greenspace to be used by area residents and visitors.
A TIGER grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation will cover 42 percent of the project cost. The $5 million grant from the Cox Foundation will go toward a campaign currently underway to raise the additional funds needed to complete the project.
"Across the nation, cities are promoting healthy lifestyles through public access to parks and trails, while also stimulating economic development. The Atlanta BeltLine is one of the nation's best examples of what can happen when public and private sectors work together," said Cox Enterprises Chairman Jim Kennedy. "I served as co-chair of the BeltLine's original capital campaign and am thrilled to see this visionary project come to life. The BeltLine's completed segments are transforming neighborhoods and connecting people with nature. This grant will help the BeltLine build another important segment on its journey to completion."