United States: Atlanta

Atlanta (/ætˈlæntə/) is the capital city and most populous municipality of the state of Georgia in the United States. With an estimated 2017 population of 486,290, it is the cultural and economic center of the Atlanta metropolitan area, home to 5.8 million people and the ninth-largest metropolitan area in the United States. Atlanta is the seat of Fulton County and a small portion of the city extends eastward into DeKalb County.

Atlanta was founded as a transportation hub at the intersection of two railroad lines in 1837. After being mostly burned to the ground during the American Civil War, the city rose from its ashes to become a national center of commerce and the unofficial capital of the "New South". During the 1960s, Atlanta became a major organizing center of the civil rights movement, with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Ralph David Abernathy, and many other locals playing major roles in the movement's leadership. In the decades following, the city earned a reputation as "too busy to hate" for the relatively progressive views of its citizens and leaders compared to other cities in the "Deep South". During the modern era, Atlanta has attained international prominence as a major air transportation hub, with Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport being the world's busiest airport by passenger traffic since 1998.

Atlanta is rated a "beta(+)" world city that exerts a moderate impact on global commerce, finance, research, technology, education, media, art, and entertainment. It ranks 18th among world cities and 7th in the nation with a gross domestic product of $320 billion. Atlanta's economy is considered diverse, with dominant sectors that include logistics, professional and business services, media operations, and information technology. Atlanta has topographic features that include rolling hills and dense tree coverage, earning it the nickname of "the city in a forest." Revitalization of Atlanta's neighborhoods, initially spurred by the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, has intensified in the 21st century, altering the city's demographics, politics, and culture.

During the first decades of the 20th century, Atlanta experienced a period of unprecedented growth. In three decades' time, Atlanta's population tripled as the city limits expanded to include nearby streetcar suburbs. The city's skyline emerged with the construction of the Equitable, Flatiron, Empire, and Candler buildings; and Sweet Auburn emerged as a center of black commerce. The period was also marked by strife and tragedy. Increased racial tensions led to the Atlanta Race Riot of 1906, which left at least 27 people dead and over 70 injured. In 1915, Leo Frank, a Jewish-American factory superintendent, convicted of murder, was hanged in Marietta by a lynch mob, drawing attention to antisemitism in the United States. On May 21, 1917, the Great Atlanta Fire destroyed 1,938 buildings in what is now the Old Fourth Ward, resulting in one fatality and the displacement of 10,000 people.

Atlanta played a vital role in the Allied effort during World War II due to the city's war-related manufacturing companies, railroad network and military bases, leading to rapid population and economic growth. In the 1950s, the city's newly constructed highway system allowed middle class Atlantans the ability to relocate to the suburbs. As a result, the city began to make up an ever-smaller proportion of the metropolitan area's population.

Surrounding Atlanta's three high-rise districts are the city's low- and medium-density neighborhoods,[6] where the craftsman bungalow single-family home is dominant. The eastside is marked by historic streetcar suburbs built from the 1890s-1930s as havens for the upper middle class. These neighborhoods, many of which contain their own villages encircled by shaded, architecturally-distinct residential streets, include the Victorian Inman Park, Bohemian East Atlanta, and eclectic Old Fourth Ward. On the westside and along the BeltLine on the eastside, former warehouses and factories have been converted into housing, retail space, and art galleries, transforming the once-industrial areas such as West Midtown into model neighborhoods for smart growth, historic rehabilitation, and infill construction. In southwest Atlanta, neighborhoods closer to downtown originated as streetcar suburbs, including the historic West End, while those farther from downtown retain a postwar suburban layout, including Collier Heights and Cascade Heights, home to much of the city's affluent African American population. Northwest Atlanta contains the areas of the city to west of Marietta Boulevard and to the north of Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, including those neighborhoods remote to downtown, such as Riverside, Bolton and Whittier Mill, which is one of Atlanta's designated Landmark Historical Neighborhoods. Vine City, though technically Northwest, adjoins the city's Downtown area and has recently been the target of community outreach programs and economic development initiatives.

Information technology—a business sector that includes publishing, software development, entertainment and data processing—has garnered a larger percentage of Atlanta's economic output. Atlanta has, indeed, been nicknamed the “Silicon peach” thanks to its burgeoning technology sector. As of 2013, Atlanta contains the fourth-largest concentration of information technology jobs in the US, numbering 85,000+. The city also is ranked as the sixth fastest-growing community for information technology jobs, with an employment growth of 4.8% in 2012 and a three-year growth near 9%, or 16,000 jobs. Information technology companies are drawn to Atlanta's lower costs and educated workforce.

Recently, Atlanta has been a center for film and television production, largely because to the Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act, which awards qualified productions a transferable income tax credit of 20% of all in-state costs for film and television investments of $500,000 or more. Film and television production facilities based in Atlanta include Turner Studios, Pinewood Studios (Pinewood Atlanta), Tyler Perry Studios, Williams Street Productions, and the EUE/Screen Gems soundstages. Film and television production injected $6 billion into Georgia's economy in 2015, with Atlanta garnering most of the projects. Atlanta has gained recognition as being a center of TV and film production, it being determined by Gocompare.com to be in the top 10 of the most popular cities in the world where films and TV shows have been filmed.

The Atlanta Falcons have played in Atlanta since their inception in 1966. The Falcons have won the division title six times (1980, 1998, 2004, 2010, 2012, 2016) and the NFC championship twice in 1998 and 2016. However, they have been unsuccessful in both of their Super Bowl trips so far, losing to the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XXXIII in 1999 and to the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LI in 2017. The Atlanta Hawks began in 1946 as the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, playing in Moline, Illinois. The team moved to Atlanta in 1968, and they currently play their games in Philips Arena. The Atlanta Dream is the city's Women's National Basketball Association franchise.

Atlanta has had its own professional ice hockey and soccer franchises. The National Hockey League (NHL) has had two Atlanta franchises: the Atlanta Flames began play in 1972 before moving to Calgary in 1980, while the Atlanta Thrashers began play in 1999 before moving to Winnipeg in 2011. The Atlanta Chiefs was the city's professional soccer team from 1967 to 1972, and the team won a national championship in 1968. In 1998 another professional soccer team was formed, the Atlanta Silverbacks of the North American Soccer League. Announced in April 2014, Atlanta United FC began play in Major League Soccer in 2017.

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