20150317_227PATH crews are less than a month away from finishing the trail between the existing Atlanta BeltLine Trail in Tanyard Park and the Bitsy Grant Tennis Center on Northside Drive. The one-third mile-long trail will give neighborhoods on the west side of Northside Drive access to the existing Tanyard Park Trail and destinations such as Piedmont Hospital, Colonial Homes, and Ardmore Park.

The trail segment being constructed is Phase I of a longer BeltLine Connector Trail that will link Peachtree Battle Road to the BeltLine Trail in Tanyard Park. Phase II, paralleling Northside Drive, is being constructed by a partnership between PATH and the Georgia Department of Transpotation (GDOT). Phase III, over Peachtree Creek, will be incorporated into the new Northside Drive bridge being planned by GDOT.

The connection between the existing trail and the tennis center is a very complex project with five bridges and limited accessibility for construction. PATH crews had to thread the needle to slip the trail between private property along Overbrook Drive, the Bitsy Grant Tennis Center, and Bobby Jones Golf Course. The bridges were delivered in small pieces and assembled on site to minimize the size of equipment needed to maneuver and place each bridge on its foundation. The existing trail along Golfview Drive was used for construction access to the east side of the creek rather than creating a new access through the forest.

The City of Atlanta Department of Parks and Recreation contributed staff time to meet with adjacent neighbors and address their concerns. PATH coordinated alignment and design features with Bitsy Grant Tennis Center and the Atlanta Memorial Park Conservancy. The cost of designing and building the trail was paid entirely with your generous donations to PATH.

Phases II along Northside Drive is being constructed in conjunction with the sewer and road project between Collier Road and Peachtree Creek. Phase III is being designed at GDOT. It will likely be constructed near the end of Phase II development. The existing PATH trail between Sagamore Drive and Peachtree Battle Road will join Phase III to complete the connection between Peachtree Battle and Tanyard Park. The popular jogging route around Atlanta Memorial Park will also intersect the PATH trail at Sagamore and Northside Drive.

The trail through Tanyard Park is branded as the Atlanta BeltLine Trail since the active CSX line in this part of the city is not a likely venue for the BeltLine Trail. Extensions to the trail in Tanyard Park through Peachtree Hills and south of I-75 are not part of Atlanta BeltLine’s five year development plan.