Atlanta mayor talks MARTA expansion, more affordable housing options at State of the City

ATLANTA — A little over halfway through his first term, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens delivered his State of the City address Monday morning, citing recent accomplishments and looking ahead.

Channel 2′s Steve Gehlbach attended the address at the Woodruff Arts Center in midtown Atlanta.

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The mayor says violent crime and murders are down dramatically since he took office and the city’s funds and balance sheet have never been higher.

Dickens also made a big announcement when it came to expanding MARTA by building new stations on the existing rail lines.

“Let me be clear: the state of our city is strong,” Dickens said.

Dickens said the city will keep pushing for affordable housing to meet the goal of 20,000 new units and officials will continue the revitalization of some of the city’s most underserved neighborhoods.

The future “Murphy Crossing” on the southwest side will add a new MARTA stop between the West End and Oakland City stations on the Beltline’s Westside Trail.

“It will for the very first time connect MARTA rail to the Beltline,” Dickens said.

He added that MARTA will expand even further, bringing trains to where people need them the most.

“So, in addition, I’m announcing today that we are partnering with MARTA to build three additional infill stations throughout the City of Atlanta,” the mayor said.


In fighting crime, Dickens said a new diversion center will open this year, creating a new unit of community assistance responders to help with non-emergency calls.

“And despite the many distractions, the Public Safety Training Center has made significant progress and is on schedule to open before the end of this year,” Dickens said.

Last year, Dickens announced it would be the “Year of the Youth” in Atlanta. He said it worked so well creating scholarships, summer job opportunities and mentorships that every year will be the “Year of the Youth” in the city.

You can read Dickens’s full State of the City address below.

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