Aug 3, 2023 - News

World-class mountain biking coming to Westside Park

An aerial layout of a proposed mountain biking facility in a dense thick forest with a pavilion, greenspace and other features

Rendering: Courtesy of Atlanta Beltline Inc.

Westside Park, the 280-acre centerpiece green space of northwest Atlanta, will be home to what advocates say will be a world-class mountain biking trail system and facility.

Why it matters: For a town with so many hills and trees, mountain biking options in metro Atlanta are surprisingly limited.

  • A new intown option — located in Atlanta's biggest park — could draw more riders and clear the path for future trails.

Details: The privately funded 2.5-mile trail network will be built among a densely wooded 45-acre section of the park near West Marietta Street.

  • The facility will include a pump track designed to help all types of bicyclists, skateboarders, rollerbladers — basically anything human powered that rolls — build skills.

Yes, and: Other features include a parallel walking trail, shade structures, and a bridge over a creek.

  • Future plans envision a tree canopy walk and pavilion repurposed from the trucking facility once located on the site.

The big picture: The project takes design inspiration from Bentonville, the corporate home of Walmart that's leveraged bicycling to boost and brand the northwest Arkansas region, and other cities.

Intrigue: Kevin Burke, the Beltline's design director, said during a recent presentation that the project is possible with funding from an "avid mountain biker who travels all over to do this, also loves pump tracks, and is looking to create a signature facility to rival just about anything else in the country."

  • He did not name the donor

Reality check: The trailhead will include an 80-car parking lot — a bummer at an intown park but necessary for a world-class mountain biking facility that could draw people from across the region.

What's next: Beltline spokesperson Jenny Odom says the construction timeline and estimated cost will be determined after the final design stage, which takes approximately 12 months.

Of note: Don't sleep on the trails at Southside Park near the airport, the first MTB trail built in a City of Atlanta park.


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