The Georgia MultiModal Passenger Terminal: Planning for and Enhancing Georgia’s Future

Derrick Cameron, MMPT Project Manager

May 9, 2012

With nearly 10 million residents and growing, Georgia’s evolving economic and social appeal continue to make this southern state a desirable location for businesses and families alike. A critical component to enhancing Georgia’s appeal as an attractive state to live, work and play is connectivity. Whether you’re a business owner in Savannah, a contractor in Rome or a manufacturer in Valdosta, being able to connect and travel across the state easily is central to Georgia’s viability and a critical component to the state’s future.

Enter the Georgia MultiModal Passenger Terminal (MMPT) project to be developed in Atlanta’s long time vacant “Gulch” area. The Georgia MMPT will bring together ground and rail transit services in a centralized downtown location to create a vital connection link for not only the people of metro Atlanta, but citizens in municipalities across Georgia. The Georgia MMPT will serve as the hub for existing and proposed transportation networks, including the existing MARTA rail and bus systems, the regional express bus systems and the Georgia railroad network. The potential live/work/play development surrounding the Terminal adds yet another dimension to the value of the project.

Poised to become a transformative transportation and development project for the city of Atlanta and the state of Georgia, the Georgia MMPT will serve as an economic development driver, both in terms of downtown redevelopment and increased travel options for companies looking to relocate here. The project, which is not connected to the July Transportation Investment Act Referendum vote, is being coordinated by an impressive team of public and private leaders in national and local transportation and development. The Federal Transit Administration, along with the Georgia Department of Transportation, Georgia Regional Transportation Authority, MARTA, the Atlanta Regional Commission, city of Atlanta and Central Atlanta Progress, leads the Georgia MMPT effort with support from an environmental team headed by engineering firm HNTB, and a master developer team of Forest City Enterprises, the Integral Group and Cousins Properties. Following 20 years of consideration, the Georgia MMPT is finally slated to become reality through calculated planning and cooperation from all partners, and its success stands to create enormous economic implications for Georgia.

Planning for the Georgia MMPT is currently underway, and in March, the Georgia DOT officially began preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the project. In late April and early May, the Georgia DOT held its first series of public informational open houses to gauge public opinion on the scope of the EIS and its potential purpose, need and impact. These meetings underscored the Georgia MMPT team’s commitment to statewide public awareness and engagement from the very beginning of project development. As the project progresses, there will be additional opportunities for stakeholders statewide to interact with the project in person and online. It is essential that communities across Georgia provide input in order to shape a project that meets all of Georgia’s needs, and the project team is committed to making the connections necessary to acquire that input.

Information on the Georgia MMPT is available at www.dot.ga.gov/mmpt and the community is invited to participate in virtual public information open houses online through May 18. To discuss and engage with Georgia MMPT and stakeholders statewide, connect via www.facebook.com/GeorgiaMMPT or http://twitter.com/#/georgiammpt. For any questions about the project, contact Derrick Cameron, Georgia DOT project manager, at 404-631-1223.