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Neighborhoods - 6 solutions for 6 ATL hassles

6 Solutions for 6 Common Neighborhood Problems

Photo credit: Illustration by Wes Duvall

THE PROBLEM:
My car was stolen! Oh, wait. It was towed. Dammit.

THE SOLUTION:
It's tight quarters in a lot of intown neighborhoods, and that means fighting for limited street parking. Even if you've parked on the same street for years and know all the driveway dips and yellow curbs, it takes only one slipup to get your ass towed. Once you notice your car is missing, call 911. The operator will ask for your vehicle's make, model, and tag number, and will contact APD. A callback will let you know whether your car's been towed. The operator should have the name and phone number of the towing company. To reclaim your vehicle, you'll need either your car title or your registration in order to get a release form from APD. If you have your title, then great! Go directly to the Atlanta Public Safety Annex. If not, you'll have to go to the impound and get your registration from your car before hitting the Atlanta Public Safety Annex. This is a time-consuming hassle even under the best of circumstances. (Best circumstances = You have money and a ride.) Expect a long wait at the Atlanta Public Safety Annex. And charges at tow companies can mount the longer vehicles remain. Don't procrastinate if you can help it.

THE INFO:
911. Atlanta Public Safety Annex, 3493 Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway N.W.
404-658-6950. www.atlantapd.org.


Photo credit: Illustration by Wes Duvall

THE PROBLEM:
Drivers treat my street like a drag strip.

THE SOLUTION:
Fight the urge to lay down tire spikes and call/email your city councilperson instead. The City of Atlanta is divided into 12 districts, and each has a representative who helps make up the Atlanta City Council. Find yours on the Council's ca. 1997 website and drop him or her a line. You'll also want to contact your local APD major, aka "zone commander," to figure out whether the street in question is the domain of the city or the state. Know going in that this problem may take a minute to fix and you'll likely have to work together with your neighbors and NPU to find a solution that's best for the community. Until then, feel free to yell and shake your fist at those jerks from your stoop.

THE INFO:
citycouncil.atlantaga.gov. atlantapd.org. atlantaga.gov.


Photo credit: Illustration by Wes Duvall

THE PROBLEM:
Potholes are destroying my car and my peace of mind.

THE SOLUTION:
Nothing like driving to work and suddenly thinking the back of your car has exploded to wake you up. Potholes are a plague on this city; land mines dotting our roadways, waiting to make our commutes and neuroses worse. You could procure a military-grade tank (we have those in Georgia) to get to and fro, or you could call Atlanta's Department of Public Works. Better yet, just call the city's 311 customer service center or create a request online.

THE INFO:
Department of Public Works: 404-330-6333. www.atlantaga.gov. Customer Service Center: 404-546-0311. www.atl311.com.


Photo credit: Illustration by Wes Duvall

THE PROBLEM:
Some jackass stole my Herbie Curbie.

THE SOLUTION:
It's a pain, right? First check to see if one of your neighbors accidentally took it (your street number should be stenciled on the side). If that doesn't help, you're going to have to purchase a new one. If you're missing the green trash bin, it will cost $54.91. If you're missing a recycling bin, be prepared to write a check for $70. Send 'em to the Office of Solid Waste Services.

THE INFO:
311. Office of Solid Waste Services, 68 Mitchell St., Suite 4800, Atlanta, GA 30303.


Photo credit: Illustration by Wes Duvall

THE PROBLEM:
My streetlights are out, it's dark, and I'm scared.

THE SOLUTION:
If the lampposts are metal, contact the city's 311 line or file a request at atl311.com. If the posts are wooden, then you need to call Georgia Power. They can be reached from 7 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Friday.

THE INFO:
311. atl311.com.

Georgia Power: 404-546-0311.

Photo credit: Illustration by Wes Duvall

THE PROBLEM:
I just bought a house. I painted the walls. I have leftover paint. Oh, and some weird, nonhazardous medical equipment that the seller left in my crawlspace? Cool if I put them out on the curb, right?

THE SOLUTION:
No! The city won't haul away these disgusting items. Some local paint stores offer a service where they'll take your old paint, for a fee based on their size. Call before you haul, however. Keep Atlanta Beautiful hosts two recycling events on the first and second Saturday of each month in Buckhead and the Old Fourth Ward, respectively. Visit the nonprofit's site for a full list of accepted materials. And keep tabs on the construction of the Center for Hard to Recycle Materials, or CHaRM, in Chosewood Park. The one-stop shop for your recycling needs broke ground last November and could open later this year.

THE INFO:
www.keepatlantabeautiful.org



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