The Porch Press

Serving the Historic Atlanta Neighborhoods of Grant Park, Ormewood Park, East Atlanta, Benteen Park, Glenwood Park, and environs

GPNA Meeting Minutes

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Call to Order–7:30pm. President’s Introduction. Approval of the June Minutes.

Mitsah Henry presented on vaccines, back to school giveaways,library openings.

Special Orders

Item One – Public Safety: Zone 6 Update from Lt. Carroll, Jcarroll@atlantaga.gov. Follow-up on dump trucks and crosswalks on Boulevard. Concern about the Grant Park pool and an upset crowd when they couldn’t open the pool. Question about general concern of crime uptick. Concern about speeding on Hill Street. July 21 there will be an NPU-W Safety meeting. Street food festival on Aug 28. House in the Park on September 5. Uptick in vehicle larcenies at all times of day, and there is a reminder to not to leave valuables in cars.

Item Two – Land Use & Zoning: Application V-21-130, 941 Grant Street (vote). Needed a variance to build a pool. Motion is unanimously approved. July 15 special meeting. Modify section 1 of LUZ rules to allow for hybrid meetings (vote). Motion is unanimously approved. July 22 LUZ meeting at 7:00pm. Notice of Surrounding Neighbors Meeting. 1039/1059 Grant Street Special Use Permit: U-21-014. LUZ Neighbors meeting to review special use permit application U-21-014, which asks to implement paid parking within the parking lots of 1039 Grant Street, AKA The Beacon complex. Property owner and applicant will be in attendance. This meeting can be attended in person at the Atlanta Preservation Center (327 St Paul Avenue) and online via Zoom. Prioritizing surrounding neighbor feedback.

Item Three – Transportation: S Boulevard Road Diet -Comment card feedback is posted. Joint NPU-W & GPNA Transportation meeting, 3rd Mondays at 7:00pm. Phill Kelly is following up with the city about fulfilling their proposal for the Cherokee bike lanes & Boulevard.

Item Four – Community Items: Grant Park Pool – Ramondo Davidson (rDavidson@atlantaga.gov & 404-546-7520 | cell 404-558-7120), Director of the City of Atlanta Office of Recreation & Sonia Wimbish (SEWimbish@atlantaga.gov & 404-546-4001). Concern about the gate being left open when lifeguards park inside the zoo. Concern about 1 lifeguard for ~50 people. Concern about lack of safety for lifeguards and swimmers. Concern about amplified music that sometimes comes from lifeguards. Concern about lifeguards pay, which American Pools is responsible for. Concern about dirty bathrooms. Question about the 4:00pm-5:00pm shut down. It was initially to clear the pool between free swim and pay swim. Now, this time is for lifeguards to take a break. There is a shortage of lifeguards. Sonia Wimbish notes that currently should not be taking the 4:00pm-5:00pm break. Question about the vendor of lifeguard, security, and maintenance — it is American Pools, they’ve held the contract for city pools for at least 6 years. They are responsible for all operations and maintenance. Question about how the city is overseeing the contract. Community members need to consistently email feedback to the city, so they know everything. Question about pools with corporate sponsors and funding issues. The Grant Park Conservancy doesn’t have the resources to support. Information from the City: The lifeguard shortage is causing many of the problems, and they didn’t realize they would have such a problem staffing. They have had to close the pool for safety due to not enough lifeguards. The pool didn’t open on Friday, July16 because there was not a security guard, and the crowd was upset. The pool will be open to Labor Day & the hours will be cut back when children return to school. As of last week, there is a monitor that visits the pool daily. Natatorium employees are full time and city pools are seasonal employees. The pool contract is available from the city via open records request.  Ask for document FC-10383.

Atlanta Preservation Center – request for donation (vote): $1,500 donation would go towards outreach and the Atlanta Preservation Center renovations. Motion is unanimously approved.

Beltline Rail Now presentation: In 2018 GPNA voted to support this movement. There is a presentation by Beth Smith (linked above).

Reminder about the Grant Park Conservancy’s Summer Shade unFestival information at www.gpconservancy.org/grant-park-conservancy-summer-shade-unfestival-returns-for-2021.

Reminder to send any neighborhood news to gpeditor@theporchpress.com for The Porch Press.

Adjournment – 8:30pm.

GPNA Officers and Steering Committee – Online Directory

Visit gpna.org/calendar for committee meetings and Zoom links

Laura Keen – President; Audra Cunningham – Vice President; Catherine Manci – Secretary; Evelyn Pannell – Treasurer; Eliza Adams – Fundraising Chair; Skyler Hassan – Land Use & Zoning; Chris Newman – Public Safety Committee Chair; Paul Simo – Homes & History Committee Chair; Stephanie Taylor Warner – Technology & Communications Chair; Phillip Kelly –  Transportation Chair