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The Atlanta BeltLine
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Atlanta BeltLine TAD
The Importance of Local Funding
Atlanta BeltLine Tax Allocation District (TAD) financing is the primary local funding source for the Atlanta BeltLine and is expected to generate approximately $1.7 billion of the total project cost of $2.8 billion more than 25 years.
The 6500-acre Atlanta BeltLine TAD was created in 2005 after receiving overwhelming support from the community and votes of approval by the Atlanta City Council, the Atlanta Public School Board, and the Fulton County Commission. Importantly, TAD financing does not require a tax increase. It is a means of using future tax funds to pay for investment in the Atlanta BeltLine now.
Please read below to find answers to Frequently Asked Questions regarding the Atlanta BeltLine TAD:
How does TAD financing work?
The 6500-acre Atlanta BeltLine TAD covers 8% of the City’s land area and lies entirely within Fulton County. Most of the properties within the Atlanta BeltLine TAD are underutilized or abandoned industrial properties. The TAD boundaries were created to avoid the inclusion of existing single family homes.
The How TADs Work diagram helps explain how TAD financing works:
- The properties within the Atlanta BeltLine TAD were generating a certain level of property tax revenue at the end of 2005.
- When the City of Atlanta, Fulton County and Atlanta Public Schools approved the TAD, they agreed to continue to receive the same 2005 level of tax revenue from properties within the Atlanta BeltLine TAD for the next 25 years, at which point the TAD will expire. This is represented by the rectangle at the bottom of the diagram.
- As new development occurs on the primarily underutilized properties within the TAD (spurred by the direct and indirect incentives as part of the Atlanta BeltLine Redevelopment), those properties generate additional property tax revenue. This is represented by the triangle with the jagged edge on the diagram.
- Bonds are issued to pay for the capital investments in the Atlanta BeltLine over the 25-year project period. The principal and interest on those bonds is paid back using the incremental tax revenue generated by new development.
- When the TAD expires after 25 years, the City of Atlanta, Fulton County and Atlanta Public Schools receive the entire tax revenue generated by properties within the Atlanta BeltLine TAD, but at a tax base projected to be approximately $20 billion higher than in 2005 as a result of the redevelopment associated with the Atlanta BeltLine. This is represented by the lightly shaded portion on the right side of the diagram.
How will TAD funds be spent?
The majority of the Atlanta BeltLine TAD funds will be used to invest in land acquisition, multi-use trails, greenspace, transit, transportation improvements, and affordable workforce housing and Atlanta Public Schools projects. Some Atlanta BeltLine TAD funds will be used for developer infrastructure, primarily for environmental brownfield cleanup, or to jump-start development in underdeveloped areas.
The spending of Atlanta BeltLine TAD bonds is approved by the Atlanta City Council, which approved the Atlanta BeltLine Five-Year Work Plan in July 2006. As part of the Community Engagement Framework authorized by the Atlanta BeltLine legislation, the Tax Allocation District Advisory Committee (TADAC) was created to advise on how TAD funds are used. This committee is composed of technical experts and community leaders and is managed through Atlanta BeltLine, Inc.
How do TADs support the education of Georgia’s children?
They help bring life back to these communities. Children who live in redeveloped communities perform better in school because of several factors:
- a stronger mix of households of varying incomes
- increased diversity and cultural awareness
- more parental involvement in schools
- decreased crime in communities where kids live
- more positive role models in the community
- better nutrition from new retailers and food stores that follow the increase in households and disposable income
Preferences in the use of the TAD bond-funded Atlanta BeltLine Affordable Housing Trust Fund for the benefit of educators and staff employed by APS.