Director of Parks and Public Realm


Employer
Atlanta Downtown Improvement District
Atlanta, Georgia

Description
The Atlanta Downtown Improvement District Inc. (A-D-I-D) is a not-for-profit corporation organized under section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. ADID was formed in 1995 by Central Atlanta Progress, Inc. ADID is funded through a community improvement district within which private property owners pay special assessments and is governed by a Board of Directors of nine private-and public-sector leaders. ADID strives to create a clean, safe, hospitable, and vibrant environment for Downtown Atlanta. To achieve that mission, ADID’s field operations programs
are focused on public safety, public space cleaning and maintenance, and supportive services outreach to unsheltered residents. ADID also funds major programs in transportation, capital improvements, placemaking, and marketing.

Central Atlanta Progress, Inc. (C-A-P) is a private, not-for-profit corporation organized under section 501(c)(4) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Governed by a Board of Directors of Atlanta’s business leaders who are dues-paying members of the corporation, CAP is a community development organization that provides leadership, programs, and services to preserve and strengthen the economic vitality and quality of life of Downtown Atlanta. Working side by side as “Atlanta Downtown” or “ATL DTN” – CAP and ADID endeavor to continually grow the economic prosperity, elevate the quality of life and improve the image of Downtown Atlanta for businesses and the broader community. To learn more visit atlantadowntown.com.

POSITION OVERVIEW

Together CAP and ADID have a long and distinguished history of leading and executing civic projects and programs, characterized by public-private partnerships that tackle Atlanta’s most difficult problems over the long term, with a very high rate of success. This body of work has resulted in an interconnected set of programs and projects that Atlanta Downtown executes in support of the revitalization of the center city.

Today, virtually all of these efforts share a critical nexus at the condition and experience of Downtown’s public spaces. The importance of Downtown’s public realm – comprised of rights-of-way, plazas, and parks – are the building blocks of Downtown community. The Director, Parks and Public Realm is responsible for guiding ATL DTN projects, programs, and operations that influence this experience. The Director’s work encompasses an established and defined set of public places, as well as a broader focus on expanding the organization’s impact throughout the district toward a mission of ensuring that Downtown remain a welcoming place for all who live, work, study, and visit. As an essential member of our team, the Director will play a pivotal role in ensuring seamless operations, contributing to the overall success of ATL DTN and the vibrancy and growth of Downtown Atlanta.

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS & KEY RESPONSIBILITIES

The essential functions include, but are not limited to the following:

Strategy and Administration

  • Strategic Planning: Develop long-term strategies and plans to enhance the public realm’s role as a community amenity and hub, considering Downtown’s unique needs and trends. Planning work builds upon the framework of adopted comprehensive plans, currently in the Downtown Atlanta Master Plan.
  • Design Mentality: Employ a working knowledge of the principles, practices, and procedures of parks and urban design; and engage in and add value to design aspects of decision making for ATL
    DTN’s public realm work.
  • Liaison with City of Atlanta: Collaborate closely with the relevant operating Departments of city government – notably Parks, Public Works, Planning and ATL DOT – to leverage partnerships and ensure seamless coordination.
  • Agreement Management: Manage memoranda of understanding (MOUs) and operating agreements with the city and others, including negotiation and adherence to terms and conditions.
  • Public Policy: Monitor, engage in discourse, and formulate positions regarding public policy, especially local laws, and regulations, to represent, advance, and protect ATL DTN interests relative to the public realm.
  • External Partnerships: Establish and nurture partnerships with strategic partners like property owners, local businesses, community organizations, and other relevant entities to enhance the aesthetics, operations, and activation of the public realm.
  • Internal Interdepartmental Coordination: Lead cross-functional and cross-departmental teams among ATL DTN programs (e.g. Placemaking, Arts & Entertainment (A&E), Capital Projects, Public Safety, Public Space Maintenance, Supportive Services Outreach, Economic Development, and Marketing) to ensure cohesive planning and execution.
  • Tracking Impact: Identify, develop, and collect data for appropriate metrics to monitor operations and track progress toward park and public realm goals.

Project Design and Implementation

  • Implement Projects and Programs in the Public Realm: Conceive, initiate, and execute projects and programs to
    deliver desired public realm strategies within parks, plazas, and along rights-of-way.
  • Project Management includes developing scopes and approaches, budgeting, selection and management of
    consultants, community engagement efforts, scheduling, and quality control.
  • Immediate Project Priorities of note include preparation for the 2026 FIFA World Cup tournament, the Urban Tree Master plan, and the ongoing implementation of the 2020 Woodruff Park Strategic Plan.

Woodruff Park

  • ADID serves a vital role in the stewardship of Woodruff Park and the Director will serve in a leadership role and as a central contact for ATL DTN’s work in the park.
  • Park Management: Harness and collaborate with the ATL DTN team in support of all aspects of the planning, coordination and implementation of daily operations and activities of the park. In addition to the interdepartmental coordination noted above, of particular importance are the Operations and Placemaking teams who manage and perform essential tasks in support of the park’s success.
  • Design and Capital Projects: Lead the identification, funding, design, and management of capital improvements in the park. Capital Projects are those that are more intensive than routine maintenance and require additional design, technical support, and construction acumen.
  • Financial Management: Develop and manage the park budget, allocate resources effectively to support all needs, manage reimbursements and contributions from partners, and catalyze fundraising by identifying grants and funding opportunities (public and private) to support park and public space initiatives and activities.
  • Income Generation: Oversee income-generating initiatives, including concessions and special events, to maximize revenue for sustaining public space operations.

Other duties that may be assigned are related to the administration and execution of Atlanta Downtown’s parks and public realm projects.

Job Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field urban planning, landscape architecture, design, engineering, public administration, or related field. Advanced degree preferred.
  • Minimum ten years of paid work experience in a professional setting ideally directly related to the specified duties and responsibilities.
  • Possess a broad knowledge of urban planning and design concepts and understand the critical nexus between urban planning, project conceptualization, and implementation, including a mastery of project management principles, methods, and techniques.
  • Demonstrated understanding of the fundamentals of successful urban public spaces and experience in public realm planning, design, construction, management, operations, and/or programming.
  • Candidates must exhibit maturity and be comfortable meeting and establishing relationships with high-level executives and government officials, speaking to large audiences, and dealing with the general public. A demonstrated ability to effectively develop and maintain productive working relationships with a wide range of stakeholder groups and allies is imperative.
  • Leadership experience and the ability to manage a diverse team.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills for effective partnership development.
  • Experience in budget management and financial planning.
  • Strong negotiation skills and experience in managing MOUs and agreements.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite (Outlook, Excel, Word, Teams, PowerPoint), with an ability and willingness to learn new software.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills in English, along with strong attention to detail and accuracy.
  • Ability to multitask, prioritize tasks effectively, and meet deadlines consistently.
  • Energized, proactive problem solver with a self-motivated and solution-focused mindset.
  • Passion for contributing to the vibrancy and growth of Downtown Atlanta. The successful candidate must creatively and practically consider context sensitivity to effectively implement projects that respond to Atlanta’s rapidly growing and diversifying population.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS AND WORK ENVIRONMENT
This job requires the employee to fulfill certain physical tasks to perform their essential job functions successfully. If needed, ADID will provide reasonable accommodation for individuals with disabilities.

This position requires work both indoors and outdoors including during periods of extreme temperatures. Walking and standing for extended periods are required.

The employee will need to:

  • Regularly communicate through talking and hearing.
  • Occasionally stand, walk, sit, and reach with their hands and arms.
  • Lift and move objects weighing up to 25 pounds occasionally.
  • Have good close and distance vision, along with the ability to adjust focus.
  • Work in an environment with low to moderate noise levels.

POSITION CLASSIFICATION (this is not a remote position)
This is a full-time, 40 hours per week, on-site in-person, exempt position. Standard office hours are 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

Salary & Benefits

ADID offers competitive compensation, along with a comprehensive benefits package, including personal time off (PTO), health and dental insurance, short-term disability coverage, a commuter benefit, and a 401(k) savings program. Eligible employees may also receive discretionary performance-based bonus pay.

ADID is an equal opportunity employer and will consider all qualified applicants for employment without regard to age, disability, religion, creed, political affiliation, race, color, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, or national origin.

Full COVID-19 vaccination is required for this position. A valid Driver’s License is required.

Successful completion of a criminal background check and testing for the use of illegal controlled substances is required.

How to Apply

APPLY TODAY TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Interested applicants should e-mail their letter of interest and resume. Only those applicants deemed qualified will be contacted. No phone calls, please.