24 May 2013

The Mall at Peachtree Center, Atlanta, GA

A dead mall

The Mall at Peachtree Center is an urban shopping destination encompassing three levels and several blocks of downtown Atlanta. The complex boasts a direct link to a neighboring Macy's, several high-rise hotels and office buildings, and even its own subway station on MARTA's red line. I only ever visited its winding corridors and complex layout once, while waiting for the New Year's Eve festivities to commence at the nearby Underground Atlanta on the final evening of 1995. Though impressive, its offerings were out of my league as I was on more of a Dollar General and Ramen Noodle budget at the time.

The Mall at Peachtree Center Mallmanac ca. 1996. View the full PDF version here.

The Peachtree Center traces its beginnings to the 1970s when the complex was planned as a "new" downtown for Atlanta. Its patrons and tenants are insulated from the outdoors and its accompanying street life by a series of skywalks bridging the spaces between the similarly themed modern buildings. This disconnection from the social interaction of the pedestrians below is seen by many as a disadvantage, a view with which I agree. So, to each their own, although when in Georgia’s capital, I'm much more likely to find what I'm looking for amongst the crowded sidewalks and eclectic shops in and surrounding Lenox Square in Buckhead.

1- Sculpture at Truist Plaza.  2- One of the former mall’s skywalks.  (Source for both)

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