Author ORCID Identifier


Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dr. Amy Spring

Second Advisor

Dr. Daniel Pasciuti

Third Advisor

Dr. Deidre Oakley

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Daniel Immergluck


Atlanta is a diverse but highly segregated city impacted by spatial injustice through uneven development and revitalization. This research project investigates how the redevelopment of Atlantic Station, a live, work, and play environment, increases spatial inequality within Atlanta, GA. Specifically, I identify how gentrification: 1) impacts the city’s socio-spatial dialects, 2) impedes on individuals’ right to the city, and 3) increases spatial injustice within Atlanta. Additionally, the purpose of this study is to explore the interaction of physical and nonphysical aspects of live, work, and play environments and how they impact the surrounding areas, and how they manifest in exclusion for people who visit. The data for this project was collected from an original survey detailing visitors’ perceptions, experiences, and feelings of and at Atlantic Station. This project also employed non-participant observations using the Public Open Spaces in Private Development Index as well as secondary data including decennial census summary files and American Community Survey five-year estimates.

Findings indicated that areas surrounding Atlantic Station were mostly consistent with Atlanta’s overall trend of gentrification and as predicted, the more exclusion visitors experienced, the less likely they were to return. Relatedly, participants expressed that authenticity, design, identity characteristics, residential and retail space contributed to feelings of exclusion. Participants also recognized and articulated concepts of destruction, gentrification, and tensions between community and consumerism within Atlantic Station. Additionally, findings indicate that Atlantic Station is a highly regulated and strictly surveilled development designed to be visibly beautiful but not physically comfortable. Study findings help pinpoint successful factors for placemaking and offers suggestions for areas where Atlantic Station could improve.


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