Boulevard has received a lot of attention these last few days with the announcement of a comprehensive plan designed to reduce crime, improve quality of life and give it the renaissance many intowners say it's due.
While the proposals, announced in detail Thursday night, affect the portion of Boulevard that runs through the Old Fourth Ward, it's drawn lots of interest neighboring Inman Park, Midtown and Virginia-Highland.
Boulevard has been a mess for decades and Matthew W. Garbett, president of the Fourth Ward Neighbors in the Old Fourth Ward, says he's cautiously optimistic about the corridor's prospects for a resurgence.
But he expressed hope that along the way, it a Boulevard renaissance doesn't lead to long-time residents and the working class being priced out.
Gentrification has been a thorny issue for many Atlanta neighborhoods including Reynoldstown, Old Fourth Ward and East Atlanta Village.
As newcomers come in and the neighborhoods become more desirable or fashionable, old timers sometimes are pushed out because they can't afford the rising rents or property taxes.
He doesn't want that scenario to play itself out in Old Fourth Ward, as he explains in our interview. He notes there is a model for how to improve the Boulevard corridor without wholesale displacement of the economically disadvantage.