transit

Atlantic Station GM Depends on MARTA to Arrive at Work

We recently spoke with Cornell Holmes, the General Property Manager of Atlantic Station. He’s a seasoned mixed-use real estate professional who has worked in San Francisco, Nashville, San Antonio, and Jackson, Mississippi. Most recently, Cornell relocated from Dallas to Atlanta to oversee property management and leasing at Atlantic Station 

 

When looking for a home in Atlanta, transit was an important factor in Cornell’s decision and led him to choose a residence accessible to a MARTA station. Now, he frequently takes MARTA from the North Springs station to work at Atlantic Station.  

 

What have you enjoyed most about living in Atlanta 

I’ve enjoyed the topography and the trees–the rolling hills and “city in a forest” have been a refreshing change in comparison to Dallas.  

 

Where do you commute from?  

I drive to the North Springs MARTA station, where they offer free parking, and I take the train to Arts Center station. I often walk from there to get to my office, or I take the Atlantic Station Free Shuttle if it’s raining or hot outside. I enjoy the opportunity to get a little exercise on both ends of my commute.  

 

Were you a transit rider previously before moving to Atlanta, or is this a new endeavor for you? 

When I worked in San Francisco, I frequently used the Bay Area Rapid Transit system (BART). I’ve used transit in many cities that I’ve visited as well.  

 

What made you want to use transit to get to Atlantic Station?  

 I ride MARTA for three reasons: 

  1. Convenience – it’s easy for me to park at the MARTA station and take the train.  
  2. Atlanta traffic I get to avoid the worst part of commuting by taking the train. When I need to drive to work, I end up working until 7 PM or later to avoid the gridlocked drive home. When I take the train, I don’t worry about leaving during peak hours, and I can leave work when I’m ready.  
  3. Sustainability – it’s the responsible thing to do.  

 

As a new employee at Atlantic Station, what made getting to work easier for you 

When I first started, I was excited to learn that Atlantic Station has a transportation program called ASAP+. They work with employers and property managers during employee onboarding to make sure employees know how to access Atlantic Station without driving alone. I learned about their programs during my company’s onboarding orientation. The ASAP+ program manager encouraged me and other new employees to sign up for the Georgia Commute Options programs, such as Guaranteed Ride Home, carpool matching, and Gimme Five. 

 

What do you like most about using transit to get to Atlantic Station? 

It’s a less stressful way to get to work. If I drive, my 22-minute trip can easily take over an hour due to traffic. When I take the train, I can skip the stress. MARTA is also a great way to get to the airport from Atlantic Station when I need to travel.   

 

How do you spend your time while on transit 

It depends on the day. I often do work on the train, but sometimes I listen to a podcast or watch something on Netflix.  

 

What advice would you give someone who is considering getting to work by riding transit?  

Register with Georgia Commute Options, log your trips, redeem your rewards, and enjoy the ride!  

 

What’s your vision for Atlantic Station going forward?  

2020 is going to be a big year at Atlantic Station. We’re opening a renovated and expanded Atlantic Green, creating new art installations, opening new retail experiences, and rolling out a new holiday program. This is all in addition to our existing programs like free yoga, outdoor movies, and special events. We’re building on a strong foundation, and we’re working to make Atlantic Station the best mixed-use development in the southeast.  

When it comes to transportation, we’re thinking long-term about how to leverage our proximity to the future Beltline. We’re working with ASAP+, Midtown Alliance, and the Upper Westside Community Improvement District to identify how we can better connect Atlantic Station to surrounding neighborhoods, especially as development booms in and around our District. I envision better spaces for biking, walking, and e-scooting. Atlantic Station was a pioneer property when it was built, and I’m looking forward to continuing our legacy of intelligent real estate services.  

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John Enjoys A Good Book While Riding MARTA

John is a Software Engineer at Square who was feeling stressed due to his tiring drive from his home in Ormewood Park to his job in Atlantic Station each day. Even though he lived a mere 15 minutes from his office, his car ride had turned into 45 minutes with all the traffic. 

Ever since a friend suggested he try taking MARTA to work, John has been hooked and now enjoys a stress-free commute that allows him to read books and bypass traffic. 

We recently spoke with John, and he shared all about his experience and how making the switch has improved his life.

 

When did you start working at Square, and where are you commuting from?

I started working at Square in August 2015, and I commute from Ormewood Park. 

What led you to start taking MARTA to work? 

I noticed recently that my commute was very stressful. With no traffic, it was 15 minutes, but normally it was taking 45 minutes. There were lots of intersections, most of which were blocked and jam-packed. I was always arriving home from work stressed out. 

One day, I was talking with a friend, and he suggested taking MARTA. Switching to MARTA doesn’t save me a lot of time, but it does save me a lot of headaches. MARTA also provides more structure in my life. If I don’t get up to catch my train, I end up goofing around and running late.  

How do you usually spend your time while riding MARTA?

Reading! I took a New Year’s resolution to read 12 books this year.

What is your favorite part about riding MARTA to work?

I’m gaining more me-time during the day and arriving to work stress-free. I also am getting exercise because I have to walk to get to the different stations. I get off at the Arts Center station and walk to the BB&T building. 

What tips do you have for people considering changing their commute?

Use Google Maps for your initial planning. You can tell what time you need to get somewhere or what time you need to leave. Try to use the desktop version over the mobile app as you can plan your departure and arrival times. 

The signs may be confusing if you are a new rider. One time I missed the train because I was paying attention to the wrong sign. Make sure you familiarize yourself with the stations and the destinations they serve to ensure you understand which train to board. 

Is there anything else you’d like to share about your commute? 

It’s helped me feel less stressed, and I enjoy the little walks between the stations and my endpoints. I encourage other people to try it! 

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