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Atlanta Department of City Planning records

Collection number: ahc.MSS1268

Scope and Contents

This collection contains meeting minutes from the Atlanta Department of City Planning and its boards and committees, including the Atlanta-Fulton County Joint Planning Board, Board of Zoning Adjustment, Zoning Review Board, and the Planning and Development Committee. The minutes include summaries from public hearings and executive meetings about decisions pertaining to zoning requests and discussions about city-wide redevelopment. Specifically, the Atlanta-Fulton County Joint Planning Board, Board of Zoning Adjustment, and Zoning Review Board held meetings on zoning, and the Planning and Development Committee’s held meetings regarding community plans and urban renewal. The zoning meeting minutes include a list of board members and the meeting's purpose; each zoning request includes the applicant or petitioner, discussions points, and the board’s decision. Minutes from the Planning and Development Committee and its subcommittees include discussions, correspondence, budgeting documents, and demographic reports.


  • 1920-1997, undated


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. All requests to publish, quote, or reproduce must be submitted through the Kenan Research Center.

Biographical / Historical

In 1920, Mayor James L. Key (1837-1939) introduced a proposal that resulted in the creation of the City Planning Commission and Department of Planning Commission. The City Planning Commission held meetings where the public could voice their opinions on Atlanta’s development and growth. It also included a Board of Zoning Appeals. In 1952, Atlanta and Fulton County consolidated their planning departments to create the Department of Municipal Planning, which included the renamed Municipal Planning Board and the Board of Adjustment.

In 1957, the Department of Municipal Planning changed names again, this time to the Department of Planning. In 1974, Atlanta established a new charter under which the department was reorganized into the Department of Budget and Planning, which the Commissioner oversaw and included a Bureau of Planning and a Bureau of Budget Policy and Evaluation. When Atlanta underwent another reorganization in 1982, it abolished the Department of Budget and Planning and created the Department of Community Development, which included a Bureau of Housing and Development, Bureau of Buildings, and Bureau of Planning. In 2003, the city renamed the department the Department of Planning and Development. It included a Bureau of Buildings, Bureau of Housing and Code Compliance, Bureau of Planning, and Atlanta Urban Design.

In 2017, the department became known as the Department of City Planning with the stated mission to “enable high quality, sustainable and equitable growth and development of Atlanta by facilitating more options for travel, abundant housing for all people, thriving neighborhoods, exceptional design in architecture and public spaces, preservation of historic resources, innovative regulatory practices, safe and durable buildings, attentive customer service and public engagement in all our work.” It includes an Office of the Commissioner, Office of Design, Office of Housing and Community Development, Office of Buildings, Office of Zoning and Development, and Neighborhood Planning Units.


12.72 linear ft. (30 document cases and one half document case)




These records are organized into four series. Series I: Atlanta-Fulton County Joint Planning Board records; Series II: Board of Zoning Adjustment records; Series III: Zoning Review Board records; and Series IV: Planning and Development Committee records. Each series is arranged chronologically.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift, 2019

Related Materials

City of Atlanta records, Kenan Research Center at Atlanta History Center

Bias in Description Note

As archivists, we acknowledge our role as stewards of information. We choose how individuals and organizations are represented and described in our archives. We are not neutral, and bias is reflected in our descriptions, which may not accurately convey the racist or offensive aspects of collection materials. Archivists make mistakes and might use poor judgment. In working with this collection, we often re-use language used by the former owners of the material. This language provides context but often includes bias and prejudices reflective of the time in which it was created. The Kenan Research Center’s work is ongoing to implement reparative language where Library of Congress subject terms are inaccurate and obsolete.

Kenan Research Center welcomes feedback and questions regarding our archival descriptions. If you encounter harmful, offensive, or insensitive terminology or descriptions, please let us know by emailing Your comments are essential to our work to create inclusive and thoughtful description.

Processing Information

This collection was processed in 2024.

Atlanta Department of City Planning records
Mariah Isbell
February 2024
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Kenan Research Center at Atlanta History Center Repository

130 West Paces Ferry Road
Atlanta GA 30305