Welcome! We are pleased that you are interested in learning more about the Cook Park project and how you can get involved!
The Trust for Public Land will lead the community engagement, design, construction, and fundraising activities for the park. The Trust for Public Land is a national non-profit organization that believes in conserving land and creating parks for people to enjoy. They have a storied history throughout Georgia by protecting more than 25,000 acres of open space, historic sites, and urban parks across the state.
Within Atlanta, The Trust for Public Land has applied its expertise to protecting over 18,000 acres along the Chattahoochee River, assembling the parcels necessary for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Historic District, and playing a key role in the acquisition of properties for the implementation of the Atlanta Beltline. The Georgia office has broadened its services to create innovative parks in urban areas to develop park space within a ten-minute’s walk of residents’ homes for individuals to be connected with nature.
The proposed 16-acre Cook Park site lies within City Council District 3 and is situated along Joseph E. Boone Boulevard near Northside Drive.
A 6-acre park called Mims Park was constructed in the early 1900s and set two blocks from the Cook Park project site. Named in honor of Livingston Mims, the mayor of Atlanta from 1901 to 1902, the site of the original park was located opposite the Georgia World Congress Center along Northside Drive where Bethune Elementary School now sits.
Mims Park was designed by famed landscape architect brothers, John Charles Olmsted and Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., and was designed to accommodate the adjacent Davis Street School. The park ceased to serve as a neighborhood park as buildings were added to the school’s campus beginning in the late 1950s. The original school building was replaced in the 1990s. Today the property is immediately surrounded by an assortment of residential and retail uses.
Atlanta’s Vine City neighborhood is a historically significant and vibrant community on the city’s west side. Not only was Vine City one of the Atlanta’s earliest predominantly African-American neighborhoods, but it was the center of planning for the Civil Rights Movement. The homes of civil rights activists Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Julian Bond still stand on Sunset Avenue – one block west from the Cooks Park site. Vine City’s homes and sidewalks are where world-changing ideas were considered and strategies were discussed. This unique history will inform the design of Cook Park.
The development of Cook Park has provided a unique opportunity for diverse project stakeholders to collaborate and coalesce in the design and implementation of an overdue neighborhood park for Atlanta’s Westside. Cook Park is expected to benefit generations of Vine City residents and attract visitors from outside the neighborhood to a dynamic community gathering space.