Groundbreaking held for Atlanta’s Westside Park at Bellwood Quarry

ATLANTA (September 10, 2018) ­— A ceremony Thursday celebrated the start of construction on Phase One of the future Westside Park at Bellwood Quarry in Atlanta. Once completed, this greenspace will represent the largest park in the city—a full 100 acres larger than Atlanta’s Piedmont Park. In addition to providing a tranquil place for Atlantans to enjoy, the park’s repurposing of the old quarry pit into a reservoir will create two billion gallons of emergency drinking water for Atlanta, increasing the city’s emergency water reserves from three days to thirty days.

“We are pleased to be participating in the drive to make Atlanta a healthy and sustainable place for people,” said Pierluca Maffey, Principal and VP of Design for John Portman & Associates. “Connecting residents to greenspace improves the livability of the city and the quality of life here.”

Phase One plans include a signature gateway entrance on the north side of the park to entice visitors to venture into the park and deliver a sense of arrival. Planned for the next construction phase, a grand overlook, the tallest structure in the park, will be placed at one of the highest points in the park so that it can be seen from locations both inside and outside the park. Rising 50 feet above the existing 950-foot elevation, the grand overlook will offer exhilarating views of the city skyline to the east, the quarry reservoir to the north, and the entire Westside Park.

In addition to John Portman & Associates, the park’s multi-disciplined project team includes design-build contactor Reeves Young, HGOR landscape architecture and planning firm, CERM, Long Engineering, EcoWorks, Full Circle Communication, Denyse, BioHabitats, Sherwood Design Engineers, S.L. King & Associates, and Sykes Consulting. John Portman & Associates led the architectural design of the new park’s grand observation outlook tower, visitors’ center and amphitheater. Phase One is scheduled to open in 2019. Eventually, the park will encompass a total of 280 acres and the firm is also participating in the masterplanning efforts of the subsequent phases.

Jack Portman, FAIA, Chairman and CEO of John Portman & Associates expressed his appreciation for the project, “As a lifelong Atlantan with a tremendous love for our city, I applaud city leadership for championing this transformative project. Our firm is excited to contribute to fulfilling the vision for the one-of-a-kind place this park is destined to be!”

John Portman & Associates is an internationally-renowned architectural design firm that has always recognized the value of integrating nature into the built environment. For more information, please visit