The article lays much blame on the city's lack of a good metro rail system. Certainly I can vouch for the value of a good transit system. On September 11th, 2001, while the DC Metro was slow going after the reports of the plane falling on the Pentagon, it did manage to eventually get its riders out of the city and back home.
But also the article talks about the dystopian layout of Atlanta and Georgia and therein, the root of the problem.
Kasim Reed, mayor of Atlanta, is the face you see on CNN and the guy called out by Al Roker, but he’s only one of more than 60 mayors of the towns and cities that make up the Atlanta region, which, depending on whose metric you use consists of 10, 15, or 28 counties (each with their own executive officers).
Atlanta’s patchwork of local governments is rooted in early Georgia history; the state has more counties—159—than any other in the country, save Texas. But while other metro areas strove to consolidate city and county operations in the mid-to late twentieth century, Atlanta grew more balkanized.
I knew about the myraid counties that make up Atlanta, but I did not know there were that many. I also did not know Georgia had 159 counties total.
The article talks about the difference between Atlanta The Actual City Designation, and Atlanta The Metropolitan Area. (Or if you prefer, The Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell Metropolitan Statistical Area.) or even Combined Statistical Area.
Reed is the mayor of the area within the city limits. He has explained this repeatedly on TV today. He has said -- in a nice way -- that once people left the downtown area back to "Atlanta's Bedrooms" via the interstates, they weren't his problem anymore.
Kinda sketchy excuse if you ask me. Greater communication between the state, the city and the surrounding counties was called for. Of course, when you are a region that sees snow with about the same frequency that Michele Bachmann has a coherent thought, assembling task forces to for a coordinated effort for these sorts of things just doesn't take priority among the usual business of state. Hopefully though, this will change things.
I am one who takes an interest in the rise of the Edge City or Bedroom Community, a phenomenon that has been on the rise for the last sixty years, but the interconnected- ness of which, still seems to, at times, perplex populations and elected officials alike.