Atlanta is poised to immediately benefit from President Obama’s stated affinity for trains as a mode of mass transit and their importance in the redevelopment of the nation’s transportation infrastructure.
The Atlanta Business Chronicle is reporting that a proposed transit hub in downtown Atlanta is about to land on the federal government’s priority list for infrastructure projects.
President Barack Obama is expected to announce Thursday the final selection of Atlanta’s Multi-Modal Passenger Terminal (MMPT) as one of a small group of projects from across the country to participate in the Dashboard initiative.
Atlanta Business Chronicle first reported July 20 the MMPT was under consideration for the program.
The infrastructure initiative, which the president unveiled during his State of the Union address in January, will fast-track review and permitting decisions on projects chosen for their potential to create jobs.
While federal environmental reviews typically take up to four years, the Dashboard initiative could rush the MMPT through that process in as little as 18 months.
Under plans being developed by the Georgia Department of Transportation and a master development team, the MMPT would be built in the blighted “Gulch” area between the CNN Center and the Five Points MARTA station.
It would combine a bus and rail terminal with associated mixed-use development.
U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Atlanta, is scheduled to formally announce the project’s selection Friday morning on the roof of the CNN Parking Deck, the same site the DOT used last October to announce the signing of a two-year $12.2 million contract with a master development team that includes Cousins Properties Inc., The Integral Group LLC – both based in Atlanta – and Forest City Enterprises Inc. of Cleveland.