Senate Bill 4: The “BeltLine Bill”

As the cost of providing public infrastructure continues to rise and the amount of public funding available becomes more constrained, a growing number of public entities are looking for innovative ways to deliver things like trails, transit, and parks.

 The Council for Quality Growth supports our industry partners in exploring creative finance options in addition to traditional municipal finance as we move forward with approved transportation and redevelopment plans.For those who are not familiar, the BeltLine is a transformative mobility and redevelopment project that will provide a network of 33 miles of streetcar transit, 22 miles of multi-use trails, 46 miles of streetscapes, and 1300 acres of public parks along a historic 22-mile railroad corridor circling downtown Atlanta and connecting 45 neighborhoods to each other. It will create 30,000 jobs and more than $10B in economic development.

To date, more than $400 million in public and private investment has yielded more than $2.4 billion in private redevelopment to date, which is a 6:1 return on investment, demonstrating the commitment and benefit of public-private partnerships. The bill will create more efficiency and effectiveness for an accelerated delivery of the Atlanta BeltLine by strengthening the role the private sector may play.

SB 4 amends existing urban redevelopment law to include a framework through which the City of Atlanta and its associated redevelopment partners can leverage limited public resources for transportation to deliver high quality cost-effective projects more quickly and at a lesser cost through outsourcing to the private sector. The bill does this by adding a new definition of surface transportation project to urban redevelopment law and lays out the requirements of procurement and bond issuance.

Thanks to the BeltLine for providing the information needed for this piece.