Abandoned Underground Atlanta?

My understanding is that in Atlanta, several square miles of streets in and around downtown were raised from around 1900 to 1925. Underground Atlanta consists of only a few blocks of restored original streets, now underneath the viaducts used to raise the street level.

The one time I was in downtown Atlanta, I saw the ends of several viaducts, with a void underneath, on the edge of the downtown street grid. I’ve never heard of any vadding underneath the viaducts outside the Underground Atlanta attraction, though. Are there any Web sites that document the hidden Underground Atlanta? Anybody ever been down there?

Would this be the true hidden underground Atlanta that is made up of uninhabited and mostly unused areas or the Underground Atlanta that is a supposed tourist destination that is unseen by white people and merchants with quality wares?

I’ve been to the tourist destination Underground Atlanta and it’s basically just a big mall.

Same thing with Sacramento as well.

I believe the OP concerns the first (the unused spaces under the street), but I’ve heard the tourist trap Underground Atlanta was rather hurting in terms of attendance and sales - is this still true?

Yep. They just can’t get enough people coming in during the evening to maintain a healthy dining/bar business. Atlantans just don’t like going downtown and since it’s not much of a tourist mecca, it will never do well. (Have you ever tried to entertain visitors for a week in Atlanta? You run out of places to take them in no time.)

But the city, besides throwing tax dollars at it, tries other tricks. E.g., the Marta shuttle to The Ted now requires you to walk thru UA to get to them. An extra long walk in a place you’d rather not be in. Great.

The World of CocaCola is moving in a few years, so that area is going to be even less of a tourist draw than it is now. Time to raise taxes.

Re. the OP, I lived in Atlanta for about fifteen years and I’ve never heard of the “underground” Atlanta you’re talking about, but here’s a site that can probably hook you up with someone who knows about it (if it’s actually there):


I’ve been to both iterations of Underground Atlanta. I was very young at the time, so I just remember it as a big dark mall in the sewers. Normal tiled mall floor, with brick walls like a sewer tunnel or a viaduct. I think it was already on the decline when I went last; this must’ve been in the late 70’s or early 80’s. When I ask anyone else about it, all they remember is that it was very dark.

IIRC it wasn’t that big a tourist draw, it was just another mall, but near downtown. Keep in mind that the Downtown Atlanta effect that ftg describes has been true for a very long time. It closed down not long after (late 70’s or early 80’s) and was abandoned for the longest time until the new, current incarnation – which isn’t really underground – was built.

This site claims that the original version was opened in 1969, and the new version was approved in 1986. You can probably find more by doing a google search on “Underground Atlanta history”.

And aside from the Olympics and New Year’s Eve celebrations, nothing’s there. Is it really true that the World of Coke is moving? That’s going to kill the place. What’s left? CNN Center? The OMNI?

Out of Atlanta, or just elsewhere in the city?

Any visitors I get, we spend one day at 6 Flags and that same night at Underground. Depending on the time of year, we either head toward Florida’s beaches or the mountains for the rest of the time.

My friend Peter plays bass guitar, and we usually manage to find an “open mike” night somewehere, but really after 6 Flags and Underground, and maybe Stone Mountain’s laser show, there isn’t much to see and do in Hot 'Lanta.


The Omni???

No, The Omni isn’t a tourist draw in the least anymore. Not a single visitor, ever.

IIRC, WoCC is moving somewhere near Olympic Cen. Park.

They’re going to put a big aquarium near there too to imitate Chattanooga. (Now that’s a city slogan!) I smell disaster all over that idea. The people who got rich off of Home Depot are rapidly figuring out how to dispose of their wealth.

Other Atlanta changes to watch: The City of Atlanta actually has reversed its population drop. A lot of white professional people with no kids are moving into converted space and new condos in the city. But black people with kids are fleeing to the suburbs. Schools are being closed left and right. There is a chance that it will have a majority white population not too far off. The effect on Atlanta politics will be immense.

Yea, I heard about the aquarium and it kinda pisses me off, cause the Aquarium in Chattanooga is just awesome.

Gawrsh, Mickey, the Underground City here in Montreal is a big tourist draw; I have tourists asking me where it is all the time, even though it’s basically a big network of malls and metro stations joined by tunnels.

It is damned helpful in the winter, though.