Recently a young man who is currently a sophomore at Georgia Tech emailed me and asked me to name some of my favorite restaurants in Atlanta. I only had 10 minutes right then to reply back, and below is exactly what I came up with…unedited! $’s indicate how pricey it is. Given more time, the list may look a bit different, but again this is what came to mind in 10 minutes:
Sound familiar Tampa? In just 11 days, Atlanta will be voting on a public transportation referendum that proposes a regional 1% sales tax across 10 counties. This sounds similar to the recent Hillsborough county tax referendum that we voted down last year…or does it?
The Atlanta BeltLine is the 1999 brainchild of Georgia Institute of Technology graduate student Ryan Gravel from his master’s thesis, a plan for a 22-mile loop that would connect 45 historic Atlanta neighborhoods, promoting in each greater access to mass transit, public parks and recreational trails. Much of the BeltLine makes use of abandoned track from previous local railroads. Ambitious in its scope, the BeltLine project hopes to grow the local economy by $20 billion dollars, create some 30,000 jobs, reclaim 1,100 acres of brownfields, and develop more than 5,000 affordable housing units for working families over the next 25 years. For more information, check out the BeltLine Tour or Maps of the Project.
Here is a video from the Referendum website from the BeltLine as well as a brochure from the Opposition so you can make an informed vote. According to the Beltline website, if the referendum passes, it would build roughly five miles of new transit on the east and west sides of Atlanta BeltLine and another five miles across midtown and downtown on city streets, connecting to MARTA rail in three locations. It would also connect transit to the existing West End Trail and run transit alongside the Eastside Trail, now under construction.
Question: What are your concerns about the Atlanta BeltLine Referendum?
Congratulations to Georgia Tech on its largest gift ever, $50 million to the Business School at Georgia Tech from Ernest Scheller, Jr. This gift allows the college the flexibility to hire even more esteemed faculty, attract top students, and take advantage of opportunities as they arise, more than doubling the college’s endowment. As an alumnus of the MBA program, I’d like to thank Ernie for his gift to the Institute, sincere love for Georgia Tech, and making the business school the best it can be. Your generosity is an inspiration to us all, and the impact of your gift will be felt by generations of Tech students to come.
Read more about Mr. Scheller and his gift, or visit the Scheller College of Business website for more information about its undergraduate programs, full-time MBA program, evening MBA program, or executive education.
Today, we picked up the kids’ trailer for my wife’s bike from our friends at Velo Champ. Doug Miller is a Georgia Tech alum that I met through our local Suncoast Alumni Network. His son Jordan is a master craftsman. It’s nice because we know very little about cycling and he takes the time to walk us through our equipment step-by-step.
Their shop is all about the sport and culture of cycling, and is located in the historic neighborhood of Seminole Heights, reminiscent of Atlanta’s Virginia Highlands with even more of a grassroots feel to it. The neighborhood may not be there yet, but for those folks like the Millers that are working hard to make the Heights a place all its own, nothing beats it!
Plus, if you are gonna go to a bike shop why not go to one with some flair and personality:
Velo Champ has some nice seats (seriously) and even has an office dog named Radar that guards the place, welcomes guests, and does the book-keeping.
Below is the finished product! My wife even took our son for a test ride down to the Seminole Heights Garden Center and back!
Are you a resident of Seminole Heights? Tell us more about your neighborhood and why you love it!
Have you ever felt like you were right where you were meant to be, but yearned to know what life would be like if you still lived somewhere you had previously? Have you been really happy in the city in which you live, but find that a little piece of your heart is still in that someplace else? For me, those two places are Tampa and Atlanta!
I grew up in Tampa, Florida like my dad and grandfather before me, roots dating back to the late 19th century when my great-grandfather moved to nearby Plant City from north Florida. I love everything about Tampa Bay from our climate, to our storied history, our beaches, and our industry.
From an early age I began making trips through Atlanta, always en route it seemed to another southern mecca.
Not until I attended Georgia Tech and made the move to Atlanta did I really get to know the city that would teach me that it is completely possible to be intensely Southern, fiercely innovative, and welcomingly international all at the same time.
I lived in Atlanta for 8 years and strived to understand who and what made the city tick, discover how an Olympic Games could change it forever, and soak up all of the constantly evolving dining, culture, and entertainment that I could. I have traveled to many places in this world, and none of them give me that same thrill that I feel, every time the Atlanta skyline comes into view as I travel north into town on I-75.
Over those 8 years from 1997 to 2004 and beyond, I have experienced an intimate fondness for that 500 mile stretch of Interstate 75 between Tampa and Atlanta. Hundreds of trips over the years make turns in the road, rural exits with road-side stands, and even some hills and trees feel like family. Anyone who makes the same trip often, knows what I mean!
Back to Tampa
After graduate school and work in Atlanta, I found myself moving to Ocala, FL to start a company that quickly expanded the rest of the way down to Tampa. This gave me the excuse I needed to return Home.
Everyone knows what Home feels like, not everyone knows the feeling of or has the same experience in, returning home. For me, it was the perfect fit. I soon met my future wife and established a life right where I left off in the sunny city by the Bay. But Atlanta will always be a part of me, and I look for every excuse to return.
I realize I am not the only one that shares a connection between these two great cities, and I hope that this blog will appeal to residents or visitors of either city and any place in between. I ask that you please share your experiences with me! I love both history and visionary city plans for the future, driving and traveling, and hearing the stories of people of all ages. Our destinations in life are crucial, but I find that the road traveled is often where all the scenery is found. WELCOME TO TAMPATLANTA! Population YOU!