Went walking in the vicinity of Pershing Point and “Uptown” Atlanta in Upper Midtown the other day. I’ll say this much: West Peachtree is not really a fun place to be a pedestrian. There’s pieces of urbanism, but it doesn’t come together in a meaningful way. For starters, West Peachtree feels like a highway. It’s one way, wide, and cars are traveling at very fast speeds. It’s a shame to see how the Rhodes Center has been mutilated. At one time, there were two other similar buildings surrounding Rhodes Hall, an unusual example of an effort to preserve Victorian architecture in the 1930s. It seems like there’s little hope of the surviving side finding new tenants, although an interesting remodel is included in the marketing materials (http://www.genekansas.com/pdf/RhodesFlyer.pdf). In 1938, you could find in the center:
- The air-conditioned Rhodes Theatre
- A&P superstore
- Anderson & McGee beauty salon
- Ann Hagan gift shop
- Calhoun radio service co.
- Dutch Oven bakery
- Georgia Milk Producers store
- May Air restaurant
- National Grain Yeast Corp.
- Oasis liquor store
- Rhodes Center florists
- Rhodes 5c and 10c store
- Roland’s liquor store
- Waldrep and Griffin druggists
- Yellow Lantern library
- Dr. Zeigler clinic (Wikipedia)
This was the first time I’d actually been in Pershing Point Park - it’s really a nice little outdoor room! The loss of the 1920s structures that used to front it was another nail in the coffin for the vitality of this nook of Midtown. There’s a few apartment buildings that give an idea of what the neighborhood looked like in its prime, as well as some interesting MCM structures like the John Marshall Law School. The little pocket park at 18th Street turned out really nice, especially since they managed to preserve the beautiful magnolia tree.