Atlanta – (February 2, 2015) In 2013, the Georgia World Congress Center Authority(“GWCCA”), who has operational responsibility for Centennial Olympic Park, commissioned the original architects of the Park, AECOM, to help with a visioning project intended to improve the Park in recognition of its’ 20th anniversary. AECOM identified several transformative initiatives that would significantly enhance the visitor experience. The first initiative involved closing Andrew Young International Boulevard (“International Boulevard”), through the Park from Centennial Olympic Park Drive to Marietta Street. By closing the road, the Park will become much safer for pedestrians and visitors to the Park, as well as honor the architects’ original design for the thoroughfare as a plaza connecting the Fountain of Rings to the northern part of the Park.
The safety of all visitors and guests is the GWCCA’s top priority. The popularity of Centennial Olympic Park and the area around International Boulevard, as well as the surrounding attractions, have made the area a hub for families visiting downtown. Thousands of children every year play in the Fountain of Rings, an area that is less than five yards away from the current road. Additionally, during campus-wide events, the Park is an epicenter of activity as attendees access the GWCCA campus via the hotel corridor. These activities bring a significant amount of pedestrian traffic to the area around the road which is frequently used as an east/west connector between the hotel district and west Atlanta.
Centennial Olympic Park will close the roadway to vehicular traffic on February 9, 2015. International Boulevard will continue to function as a public right-of-way to pedestrians and cyclists and will also support specific event related activities for the Park.