Cook Park

Conceptual rendering of Cook Park with a Stadium by HDR, IncConceptual rendering by HDR, Inc. for The Trust for Public LandPhoto credit: HDR, Inc.

Vine City and nearby English Avenue have long been home to African American luminaries. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. lived here, alongside fellow civil rights leaders Julian Bond and Maynard Jackson. Despite its proud legacy, more recent memories reflect the outcomes of decades of disinvestment and inequality. One of those memories is of a rainstorm in 2002 that flooded City and English Avenue, destroying dozens of homes and displacing over a hundred residents.

The Trust for Public Land is working with the City of Atlanta and the community to transform 16-acres into a state-of-the-art city park, engineered to alleviate the risk of future catastrophic flooding and provide multiple benefits to the neighborhood. Over the past four years, we’ve worked with residents to plan a park that meets the unique character of this special place. It will feature a state-of-the-art playground, splashpad, climbing boulders, outdoor fitness equipment, two multi-use sports courts, public performance space, and a variety of spaces for neighbors and visitors to enjoy. Additionally, thanks to the National Monuments Foundation, the park will feature statues highlighting local heroes of the civil rights movement.

The park is designed to alleviate flooding for the 150 acres of surrounding residential neighborhoods, and reduce water pollution risks to the source of Atlanta’s drinking water situated downstream. Designed and engineered by The Trust for Public Land and Atlanta’s Department of Watershed Management, the park’s related green infrastructure will be accompanied by native plants that manage and improve water quality downstream. During storms, a retention pond will expand to store up to 10 million gallons of water that can be released gradually and treated properly to remove contaminants before flowing downstream. 

We have raised nearly $14 million to help fund the $35 million project, with Atlanta’s Department of Watershed Management providing the balance. The wait is almost over. Cook Park is slated to open in the spring of 2020 – we can’t wait to see you there!  

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Since 1972, The Trust for Public Land has protected more than 3.3 million acres and completed more than 5,400 park and conservation projects.