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The Trust for Public Land in Action: 2019 C E L E B R AT I N G W HAT YO U M A D E P O S S I B L E IN GEORGIA AND BEYOND

Thank you for your support of The Trust for Public Land! Together with partners like you, we are improving life for millions of people in millions of wonderful ways: creating climateresilient communities, boosting health and wellness, advancing economic opportunities and learning outcomes, conserving and protecting our most precious landscapes, and reconnecting people to the lands and experiences that bind us together. From the transformation of schoolyards in New York, Georgia, and California to the conservation of places of adventure in Montana, Utah, and Maine—we couldn’t do this inspiring work without you. 2019 has been a year full of exciting progress for The Trust for Public Land in Georgia. From big-vision planning for the Chattahoochee RiverLands to partnering with the City of Atlanta to build Rodney Cook, Sr. Park to launching the

Atlanta Community Schoolyards program and introducing children and youth to the wonders of nature, we are having a meaningful impact on public spaces in our state. Since 1991, The Trust for Public Land’s Georgia team has worked across the state to conserve land, working with communities to plan their green spaces and ensuring that sites important to our local history are available for future generations. We are so proud and grateful to have you as a critical ally in these successes and to share these victories with you. More than that, we are excited for all the brilliant work that’s yet to come— because we know this work is inspiring, it is necessary, and it is just the beginning. Thank you again for your partnership!


Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area

10-minute walk to a park AT L A N TA C O M M U N I T Y S C H O O LYA R D S In older cities like Atlanta, it can be difficult to identify sites for new parks to make our 10-minute walk vision a reality. With 103 schools throughout the city, existing public land at schools provides a creative solution to this problem. If all of Atlanta’s public schoolyards were renovated and served as community parks, over 80 percent of Atlanta residents would live within a half-mile of a park. Today, 71 percent of residents have this easy access to a park, trail, or green space.

We know great parks can transform communities. Green spaces stay cooler than asphalt jungles, reducing rising urban temperatures and capturing and filtering millions of gallons of stormwater runoff to prevent flooding. Trees and soil absorb carbon pollution out of the air and create healthier places to live. Parks stregthen communities with more social connections and less violence—improving human health, happiness, and well-being.

C O O K PA R K Working alongside English Avenue and Vine City residents, we are building Cook Park to meet the needs of more than 3,000 residents who live within a 10-minute walk. The park will provide amenities requested by the neighbors and ensure a serene space for rejuvenation. And climatesmart green infrastructure design will capture 10 million gallons of stormwater to ensure that the neighborhood never again experiences devastating flooding.

Working with Atlanta Public Schools, Park Pride, and the local chapter of the Urban Land Institute, we are launching a three-year pilot program to improve 10 Atlanta schools and their surrounding communities by renovating and opening schoolyards as neighborhood gathering spaces when school is not in session. Thousands of community members will have new close-to-home access to a great place to play!

Construction should be complete in early 2020, and we are looking forward to seeing the park in use! TPL STAFF


cook park Atlanta, GA

dobbs elementary Atlanta, GA

The Chattahoochee RiverLands At the heart of our work is our belief in access to the outdoors for all. That’s why we are leveraging our two and a half decades of land protection efforts along the Chattahoochee River to build a seamless public realm that all people can enjoy—especially those who have traditionally been shut off from the river. The Chattahoochee RiverLands aims to activate the river and its valley through marketing, programming, planning, and capital investment. 2018 saw the creation of the Chattahoochee RiverLands brand and the launch of the Chattahoochee RiverLands Greenway Study, an 18-month-long, 100-mile recreation planning effort funded with a $1.5 million in support from the Atlanta Regional Commission, the City of Atlanta, Cobb County, and The Trust for Public Land.

In 2019, the design team researched the ecology, culture, demographics, and connections in the area between Buford Dam and Chattahoochee Bend State Park. The Chattanoochee Riverlands working group, representing over 50 nonprofits and government agencies, helped formulate overarching goals that will direct design decisions: connectivity, common ground, ecological refuge, and living legacy. Now the team is working to identify the best place for the trail and gathering the necessary data to ensure that what looks good on the map will work on the ground.


Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area

Trails and outdoor recreation THRIVE OUTSIDE Spending time in nature helps children learn, relax, and build social bonds. That’s why we are very excited to be leading a network of partners connecting youth to the RiverLands. A Thrive Outside grant from the Outdoor Foundation makes all this work possible.

GEORGIA TRAIL SUMMIT In May 2019, The Trust for Public Land hosted the Georgia Trail Summit in Columbus, GA. Over 200 attendees shared best practices, learned from each other, and were inspired by presentations from leaders in the trail research, design, and construction fields.

The Trust for Public Land is working with the local YMCA and Boys and Girls Clubs to connect children from under-resourced urban neighborhoods to the outdoors along the Chattahoochee and at close-to-home parks.

This conference also provided the perfect platform to begin building a coalition of partners to advocate for the establishment of a state agency promoting outdoor recreation in Georgia. Income from outdoor recreation accounts for nearly onethird of Georgia’s annual budget, yet there is no state-level entity to act as a source of information for either the outdoor recreation industry or the millions of people camping, fishing, hiking, biking, and birding across the state. The Trust for Public Land is leading the effort to create an agency so that more people can enjoy Georgia’s great outdoors.

This program will allow thousands of children to explore the fun of outdoor activity in great public spaces created by The Trust for Public Land along the Chattahoochee and in their own neighborhoods. Our partners in this effort include the Chattahoochee Nature Center, Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, the West Atlanta Watershed Alliance, and the Greening Youth Foundation. HOLLIS BENNETT

Save the date for our next

Georgia Trail Summit May 3–4 in Augusta. For more information, please contact Walt Ray at

Join us for a

Walk and Talk along the Chattahoochee River!

chattahoochee blueway Columbus, GA

Please contact Michele Kresge at for information about an upcoming event.


Enota Park Atlanta, GA

Our work is made possible thanks to the generosity of individuals, companies, and foundations like you. Current funding opportunities include: • The Trust for Public Land – support our landfor-people mission with an unrestricted gift

• Atlanta Community Schoolyards ($1,800,000 needed)

• The Chattahoochee RiverLands Program ($300,000 needed)

• Thrive Outside ($190,000 needed)

• Chattahoochee Program Director Endowment ($265,000 needed)

• Corporate sponsorships are available for events like our annual Celebration of Land, Georgia Trail Summit, Your Land on Tap, and Field Trips.

Georgia Advisory Board We are so grateful for our amazing volunteers! Doug Aldridge Hunter Amos Marcia Bansley Patricia T. Barmeyer Mark Berry W. Moses Bond Mary Calhoun B.W. Cardwell, Jr. Jackie Cushman Jocelyn Dorsey Robin Dunson Ralph G. Edwards, Jr.

Alan Elsas Adina Alford Erwin Chris Graham Henry D. Gregory, Jr. John Hardman Paula Hennessy Henry L. Howell Jim Irwin Bob Kinney Assad Lazarus David S. Martin Suzanne Masters

James H. Morgens Gary Motley Alan S. Neely Carlos Pagoaga Amy Phuong Christopher Glenn Sawyer Sally Seeds Jeffrey L. Seavey Markham Smith Rian Smith Shelli Willis Chad Wright, Chair


MEET THE GEORGIA TEAM (Pictured left to right) • Daisy Mugford, Thrive Outside Fellow • Karen Clarke, Philanthropy Coordinator • Michele Kresge, Engagement Officer • Susan Patterson, Director of Philanthropy • Jay Wozniak, Director of Georgia Urban Parks • Walt Ray, Chattahoochee Program Director • George Dusenbury, State Director

N E X T G E N AT L A N TA NextGen Atlanta is connecting Georgia’s next generation of leaders with our land-for-people mission through advocacy, outdoor recreation, and special events. In May 2019, NextGen members hosted the first Your Land on Tap. Several hundred people of all ages gathered at an under-utilized green space in Northwest Atlanta to celebrate public land in a pop-up beer garden with hammocks, games, and food trucks. Guests enjoyed the benefits of public green spaces and joined our efforts to bring more parks to more people in Atlanta. Join the fun! Contact Michele Kresge at


Thank you

for supporting our land-for-people mission in Georgia and beyond. We couldn’t do it without you.

Join us. The Trust for Public Land creates parks and protects land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come.

George Dusenbury Georgia State Director 404.873.7306 | Susan Patterson Director of Philanthropy 404.873.7306 | 600 W. Peachtree Street, Suite 1840 Atlanta, GA 30308


Profile for The Trust for Public Land

GEORGIA - The Trust for Public Land in Action: 2019  

Celebrating what YOU made possible in Georgia and beyond.

GEORGIA - The Trust for Public Land in Action: 2019  

Celebrating what YOU made possible in Georgia and beyond.

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