We love Inman Park, for its breathtaking architecture, rich history and - even throughout its incredible revitalization - ability to hang on to its freak factor. We've been based in Atlanta's first suburb and last-standing Victorian neighborhood for more than two decades. In that time, we've experienced the influx of fabulous restaurants, shops and residential development first hand. We've watched it build up while not being overbuilt, under the careful watch of its strong and sassy neighborhood association.
Inman Park was developed in the late 1880s by Joel Hurt as the city's most prestigious neighborhood, with connectivity to downtown and his namesake Hurt Building via the city's first electric streetcar - the lines of which remain buried under the asphalt of Edgewood Avenue to this day. If you've ever been to a party at the Trolley Barn, you've stood where early residents caught that trolley en route to their offices downtown. In fact, in 1896, The Atlanta Constitution noted that "... as far as accessibility, [Inman Park] ranks second to no residence portion of the city."
Sadly, the pendulum swung in the early 1900s when a fickle aristocracy fled Inman Park for Druid Hills, Morningside and Buckhead. Zoning regulations slacked allowing for multifamily development, and the huge Victorian homes were soon divided into rooms-for-rent. The area continued to decline until the early 1970s, when a group of progressive young professionals moved in and began revitalizing. They formed the Inman Park Restoration, along with a neighborhood association, neighborhood newsletter, garden club and a pre-school. To publicize their progress, they began the Tour of Homes with a small festival, which has grown into the hugely popular Inman Park Festival, held the last weekend in April.
Over the years, Inman Park has been home to masters of industry, mayors and congressman. It remains Atlanta's best collection of residential architecture from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, as well as the city's first example of a garden suburb, carefully-curated by Hurt, and later inspiring others, such as the Frederick Law Olmstead-designed Druid Hills neighborhood.
Run - don't walk - to the Inman Park Festival THIS weekend for the best festival in town, complete with Tour of Homes, parade, face painting, carnival food, Theater Night and more.