by Bob Voyles, board member – Cumberland CID
I have seen many changes to the Cumberland area as a CCID board member and in my nearly 40 years in commercial real estate. The biggest recent change has been the Atlanta Braves moving to the district. The Cumberland CID is truly coming of age by improving transportation access throughout our district, making it easier to enjoy the Atlanta Braves Ballpark and Atlanta United’s training facilities, as well as CEPAC, Live Nation, and our area’s vast network of parks and trails.
The Braves’ move has had a positive impact on the district, including creating more area destination retail. It is now time for multimodal transportation to catch up. Urban design that encourages a transition away from single-occupancy car use is slowly being adopted across multiple Atlanta districts, including Cumberland, with cycle trail networks, and pedestrian bridges branching off and over the many arterial roads around the district. Thanks to forward-thinking leaders, the CCID had the advantage of having a head start on its multimodal road infrastructure to accommodate the changes needed.
In addition to being a CCID board member, I also was fortunate to be a founder of the Perimeter CID and I observed the challenges that area faced when it comes to allowing more pedestrian and bicycle access along its more narrow streets and connections to MARTA. Cumberland on the other hand, was blessed with roadways already wide enough to begin the design process of a complete trail network, and now a loop road connecting the four quadrants around Cumberland at I-285.
Our vision for the Cumberland area is to give commuters the ability to travel from destination to destination in many alternative transportation options. That is very exciting to me. An avid cyclist, I am impressed by how CCID and Cobb County have thoughtfully planned and built the region’s extensive trail network. Even after cycling more than 500 miles down the Pacific Coast several years ago, one of my favorite things to do is hit the Silver Comet Trail. There’s nothing like nature’s air conditioning while enjoying the sights all around you.
Zagster, the bike sharing program, is adding three new stations in CCID. This is a welcome addition and a great step forward in expanding access to alternative modes of transportation. With October being Biketober month, I’d invite everyone to register for the Atlanta Bike Challenge and log your bike miles all month long so you and your team members have a chance to win some great prizes (and improve your health). It’s a great excuse to explore the CID’s beautiful trail network while enjoying the cooler weather.
Cumberland continues to grow and expand, and with projects like thyssenkrupp coming to The Battery, another new commercial building on Riverwood, new multi-family communities, and a new hotel from Noble Hospitality in the CID, we are riding that forward momentum. I believe our district can offer as much or more than any other market in the area, and setting up Cumberland to succeed in a less SOV-focused future only will make us stronger.