The federal grant will help fund nearly 2 miles of the Southside Trail from Pittsburgh Yards to Boulevard. (Map courtesy ABI)

The City of Atlanta and Atlanta BeltLine, Inc. were awarded a $16.46 million RAISE grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) for the construction of nearly two miles of the Southside Trail.

The segment, which spans from Pittsburgh Yards in southwest Atlanta to Boulevard in the southeast, will be a big step for connecting the Westside and Eastside Trails.

Atlanta BeltLine, Inc. President and CEO Clyde Higgs said in a statement the organization was “incredibly appreciative to the USDOT and our congressional delegation for the recognition and support of the Atlanta BeltLine.”

“This project is much more than public infrastructure,” Higgs continued. “With people at the forefront, the BeltLine is improving connections to jobs, schools, and opportunities, enhancing equity and mobility, and fostering culture.”

The RAISE grant will also leverage design and construction funding from the Special Service District and the Tax Allocation District (TAD). The grant builds on $4 million in federal funding received earlier this year through the Atlanta Regional Commission Transportation Improvement Program.

“When we connect our communities with pedestrian and bike trails, we provide a pathway for residents to enjoy local green spaces and invest in small businesses,” said Sen. Raphael Warnock, who helped secure the grant along with colleague Sen. Jon Ossoff. “We bolster social and economic mobility for hardworking Georgians when we make strong federal investments in projects like the Atlanta BeltLine, and I look forward to securing more infrastructure investments like this one for other vital transportation projects in Atlanta and across our state.”

“This $16 million investment in the BeltLine is going to substantially accelerate the project and will help communities all around Metro Atlanta,” Ossoff said. “When I was campaigning for the Senate, I made promises to deliver resources for the BeltLine, and I’m keeping those promises.”

Construction is expected to get underway within approximately two years, following the necessary preparations of brownfield remediation, utility relocation, and securing permits.

The 1.9-mile trail will include six ADA-access points, including ramps and retention walls, and two enhanced at-grade crossings. The total cost for construction of these segments of the Southside Trail is approximately $40 million.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.